The aviation industry in Africa is expected to suffer a revenue loss of $8.103 billion this year due to COVID-19, according to a report by the African Airlines Association (AFRAA).
The analysis among the first series of study by AFRAA examining the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Africa’s air transport sector.
The African Airlines Association report shows that passenger revenue in the first quarter of this year dropped to $0.403 billion which represents 13.8 per cent year-over-year with more impact seen in Q2 2020 costing $2.740 billion.
According to the AFRAA analysis, air transport recovery is expected to start from Q3 2020 with domestic operations taking the lead followed by regional and international flights.
For the month of May, the report shows that the aviation industry recorded a 90.3 per cent year on year passenger traffic reduction.
According to the report, there has been a shortage of cargo plane capacity since march this year due to demand from the COVID-19 pandemic such as medical supplies and essential goods.
The report also shows that border closer by states during the pandemic period has caused a significant reduction in belly cargo capacity dropping by 16.169 billion available seat miles in May which is a year on year reduction of 78.40 per cent.
AFRAA Secretary-General, Abdérahmane Berthé during the launch of the report noted that lack of inadequate funds to reboot the industry.
“The availability of liquidity is the main issue to be addressed for airlines to survive and restart their operations. Without it, airlines can simply not survive this pandemic long enough to restart their operations,” said Mr Berthé.
Mr Berthé asked African governments to have a bailout and stimulus package that reduces the burden of ongoing operating costs, compensates significant losses and subsidises the industry’s recovery and survival.
“We also call upon international financial institutions and development partners to support Airlines with facilities that can help ensure the availability of much-needed credit and liquidity,” Mr Berthé added.