- The association says that despite the seeming reduction in the number of new cases in many countries, the alarming spread of the Delta variant is worrying.
- Domestic markets continue to record better performance with demand for passenger travel at 63.2 per cent
The havoc caused by the Covid-19 pandemic on the aviation industry globally and in Africa is far from over, the African Airlines Association has said.
The association said despite the seeming reduction in the number of new cases in many parts of the western countries, the alarming spread of the Delta variant is worrying.
Africa currently accounts for a high number of new infections since the beginning of June.
The countries most affected include Zambia, Uganda, Namibia, Botswana and Kenya, which are experiencing very high infection rates.
Domestic markets continue to record better performance with demand for passenger travel at 63.2 per cent as opposed to intra-Africa at 22.2 per cent and 13.9 per cent for intercontinental.
Passenger capacity (seats offered) for domestic, intra-Africa and intercontinental account for 47.8, 22.3 and 21.7 per cent respectively.
The association notes that African airlines restart of operations on international routes maintained a positive trend observed in the last couple of months.
In June, the routes saw an additional 10.2 per cent increase to 72.7 per cent from a recovery of 62.5 per cent in May
The trend is partly attributed to the reopening of international boarders by Algeria and Morocco after more than a year of closure in the case of Algeria.
In intra-African connectivity, Mauritius continues to be the most impacted hub, with a reduction of 98 per cent of possible connections to/from African airports compared to February 2020.
Connectivity at Nairobi JKIA in June declined mainly due to schedule adjustments and frequency reduction by national carrier, KQ.
The association noted that Africa's passenger traffic volumes remain low due to inconsistencies in messaging regarding border closures, health protocols and continued upsurge in Covid-19 infections in some countries.
As at June 25 2021, the number of infected cases worldwide reached 180 million out of which 5.3 million were in Africa.
The month of June saw African airlines’ traffic decreasing by 59 per cent compared to same month in 2019.
Similarly, capacity declined by 49.6 per cent as of June 2021.