Open Skies …ICAO Council President Hails AU Single African Air Transport Market Launch As Key To Continent's Economic Development

drICAO Council President, Dr. Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu, says the official launch of the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM) represents a historic milestone for Africa and Africans. He was addressing African leaders at the 30th African Union (AU) Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia late January 2018.

"This new and more liberalized air services framework stands to deliver tremendous new economic benefits and potential to this continent," Dr. Aliu remarks. "And by steadily enhancing regional and global connectivity, continent-wide, air transport has continued to foster economic growth in Africa in terms of enhanced travel and tourism and other vital trade activities."

President Aliu underscores that aviation supports almost seven million jobs and generates more than 72 billion dollars in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Africa.

"Let us acknowledge therefore, that with this launch today of the Single African Air Transport Market, we are taking together a very major step in enabling the Yamoussoukro Decision's fuller potential, and in concretely advancing the implementation and objectives of the AU Agenda 2063," he stresses. "Certainly the 23 States which have signaled their early participation in this new market will be reaping the initial and quite significant socio-economic benefits it will help to deliver, including toward the realization of Agenda 2063 and the attainment of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals adopted under Agenda 2030."

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