Did you hear that the African Development Bank feels that Africa’s aviation time has finally come? Do you know that Senegal is opening its much-anticipated airport in Dakar and that Delta is celebrating 10 years of flights to Nigeria?
From new routes to airport openings and new roads, we’ve rounded up some of the most exciting events in Africa Tourism News this week…
“Africa’s aviation time has come!”
“Africa’s aviation time has come!” This was the message from the African Development Bank (AfDB) after the organisation signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with IATA.
Under the MoU, IATA and the AfDB have agreed to work together to help develop a safe, secure, and efficient aviation industry in Africa. The organisations have committed to creating and implementing programs and projects that will improve the sector in Africa, and stimulate economic and social development.
Priority areas include improving connectivity, safety, and aviation infrastructure.
IATA Director General and CEO Alexandre de Juniac says: “The MoU with ADB will help facilitate the growth and development of Africa’s aviation industry. In so doing, it will expand prosperity and change peoples’ lives for the better in the continent’s 54 nations.”
Senegal opens high-capacity airport
After waiting for more than ten years, the much-anticipated new airport in Senegal is finally opening its doors today (7 December).
Located about 40 kilometers east of the capital city, Dakar, the Blaise Diagne International Airport (AIBD) is estimated to have cost $575 million.
With an initial capacity of 3 million passengers a year, the mega airport is reportedly among the largest airports in Africa. Over time, its capacity is expected to rise to 10 million passengers a year, making it one of the highest-capacity airports on the continent.
“The AIBD airport is definitely a state-of-the-art infrastructure project. The new facility’s increased size can accommodate larger planes like the Airbus A380 and will handle much more air traffic than before,” El Hadji Beye, a civil engineer working in West Africa was quoted by CNN.
Delta celebrates 10 years to Nigeria
Delta Airlines has marked its 10th anniversary of nonstop service between Lagos and Atlanta with a promise to be more committed to its Nigerian passengers.
The airline also announced it will begin to operate a new daily service between Lagos and the US from March 26, 2018 with four weekly services to Atlanta complemented by three new weekly flights to New York-JFK.
Both routes will be operated using the A330-200 aircraft, recently introduced onto the Lagos-Atlanta route, adding more seats and offerings, an enhanced on-board experience.
Speaking at the celebration in Lagos, Delta Airlines’ senior Vice President, Network Planning, Bob Cortelyou, said: “It’s an honour to serve Lagos. For 10 years it has been an important route in our trans-Atlantic network not only for the business community, but also for customers reuniting with friends and families across the United States.”
New road to link South Africa and Mozambique
A new road linking South Africa’s KZN province with Mozambique is expected to open next month, the KZN Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs has confirmed.
“Currently, if you travel between Kosi Bay and Maputo, you spend about six hours. We have been told that once this road has been constructed, it will take about 90 minutes to travel. That is a huge achievement,” said Department spokesman Bongani Tembe.