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Focus Africa Conference to Strengthen Aviation’s Contribution to African Development

Geneva – It was announced today that the Focus Africa Conference will examine six priorities under IATA’s Focus Africa initiative. These priorities will strengthen aviation’s contribution to economic and social development. In addition, they will improve connectivity, safety, and reliability for passengers and shippers. Focus Africa is taking place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 20-21 June 2023, with Ethiopian Airlines as the host airline.

Africa’s passenger traffic is expected to double over the next 15 years. There is no doubt that the continent has the greatest potential and opportunities for aviation. Infrastructure constraints, high costs, lack of connectivity, regulatory obstacles, slow adoption of global standards, and skills shortages limit this potential. IATA’s Director General, Willie Walsh, said the Focus Africa Conference will bring together the continent’s key stakeholders to address these challenges.

The Opening Keynote Address will be delivered by Mesfin Tasew, Group CEO of Ethiopian Airlines. Our home city, Addis Ababa, is delighted to host the IATA Focus Africa Conference. African economic growth depends on the advancement of the air transport industry. Tasew said the conference will bring together industry leaders to drive the Focus Africa initiative.

Speakers & Sessions

In addition to Walsh, Tasew, and Kamil Alawadhi, IATA’s Regional Vice-President for Africa and the Middle East, the following speakers will be in attendance:

  • Yvonne Makolo, CEO of Rwandan Airlines and Chair of the IATA Board of Governors (2023-2024)
  • Adefunke Adeyemi, Secretary General of the African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC)
  • Abdulrahman Berthe, Secretary General of the African Airlines Association
  • Airlines Association of Southern Africa (AASA) CEO Aaron Munetsi
  • Airlink CEO Rodger Foster
  • SACAA Director General Civil Aviation Poppy Khoza
  • Deputy Administrator, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Bradley Mims

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