Air Cargo Management

Swissport International joins IATA’s ‘Focus Africa’ initiative

Swissport International AG
photo_camera Credit: Swissport International AG

To play its part in improving connectivity, safety, and sustainability in African aviation, Swissport International has become a partner of the IATA ‘Focus Africa’ initiative.

‘Focus Africa’ is a collaborative initiative, pooling together resources from across the aviation value chain, to urgently address critical challenges hindering the advancement of aviation across Africa.

With a strong focus on providing ramp handling, air cargo handling and passenger services, Swissport International is already one of the key contributors to the operational stability and the growth of the aviation sector in Africa.

With a youthful demographic and the potential to triple its economic footprint over the next two decades, Africa’s aviation sector holds vast opportunities.

However, it also faces significant challenges such as limited infrastructure, high operational costs, regulatory issues, and the urgent need for sustainable practices.

Dirk Goovaerts, chief executive of Continental Europe, Middle East and Africa, and global cargo chair of Swissport International, said: “Swissport recognises the immense potential of the aviation industry in Africa and is committed to creating a positive impact.

“Together with IATA, we aim to support passengers and cargo customers and ultimately promote the continent’s economic development.”

Kamil Al-Awadi, IATA’s regional vice president, Africa and Middle East, said: “Africa’s aviation industry has the potential to transform lives and economies.

“Through collaboration with partners like Swissport, across the aviation industry we aim to confront these challenges head-on, building a more sustainable and prosperous aviation ecosystem together.

“Swissport’s commitment to support ‘Focus Africa’ demonstrates a shared vision for the future of African aviation.”

To enable tangible and sustainable progress in response to African aviation’s most pressing challenges, ‘Focus Africa’ will intensify efforts and step-up activity in six key areas:

  1. Safety: Improve operational safety through a data driven, collaborative program to reduce incidents and accidents.
  2. Infrastructure: Facilitate the growth of efficient, secure, and cost-effective aviation infrastructure.
  3. Connectivity: Promote the liberalisation of intra-African market access through the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM).
  4. Finance and Distribution: Accelerate the implementation of secure, effective, and cost-efficient financial services and adoption of modern retailing standards.
  5. Sustainability: Assist the African aviation industry in achieving net zero by 2050.
  6. Future Skills: Promote careers in aviation for a steady supply of diverse talent to meet future industry needs.

Partners and stakeholders are encouraged to support the objectives and projects of ‘Focus Africa‘ by providing financial investment, time, research, and participation in task forces.

Together, these efforts should create a promising future for African aviation, unlocking economic opportunities that benefit the entire region.

READ MORE NEWS: Swissport acquires majority stake in Düsseldorf Airport cargo handling unit

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