Ethiopian Airlines Playing Crucial Role in Accelerating African Integration: Group CEO


Addis Ababa February 21/2023 /ENA/ Ethiopian Airlines has been instrumental in accelerating Africa's ambitious regional economic and trade integration, Group Chief Executive Officer Mesfin Tassew told ENA.

Recall that leaders of Africa have recently passed concrete decisions on investing in sustainable infrastructural development such as railway, road and air transport.

Realizing this requires huge infrastructure, the CEO noted, adding that “air transport is (of course) crucial to accelerate trade and economic ties.

Sustainable and fast air transport service is crucial since the African Union has decided to use air transport as one of major economic growth vehicles, he stated.

To meet this endeavor, Ethiopian Airlines has been playing a leading role for physical integration of the African continent by transporting many passengers from one country to another.

“Ethiopian Airlines has been investing a lot in making Bole Airport as the most convenient transit point to transfer passengers between African destinations and also cargo service among the African continent countries.”

Mesfin said the airline will continue to promote the continental free trade initiative by further expanding its infrastructure in terms of airport facilities, aircrafts and opening up new destinations to support the African Union efforts.

Kenyan Civil Aviation Authority Director-General Captain Gilbert M. Kibe said Ethiopian Airlines is doing a marvelous job to integrate Africa by promoting trade and tourism.

“Ethiopian Airlines is the biggest airline in Africa. This airline is doing its best. Its flight is to every African country. But you need to go through one stop or two stops by the time we get to some of the countries. Ethiopian Airlines is doing extremely well in promoting trade among us and tourism.”

Captain Kibe further stated that Ethiopian is a model in making partnerships with other airlines around Africa, including Togo in Malawi and other places.

Ethiopian Airlines Group, the largest Pan-African airline was ranked first by passenger and cargo traffic in 2020.

According to the Kenyan Director-General, air transport is vital for the Pan-African dream of trade and tourism to be realized.

“The African Continental Free Trade Area agreement is the blueprint for success, which is already given to us by the African Union. We also have the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM) that has already been ratified and launched. So what we need to do is to implement this transport market.”

He further urged the effective implementation of the Single African Air Transport market (SAATM), a flagship project of the African Union Agenda 2063 to advance the liberalization of civil aviation in Africa and act as an impetus to the continent’s economic integration agenda.

Ethiopian News Agency