African Aviation Leaders Convene to Explore Profitability, Open Airspaces, and Boost Women’s Participation

african airlines summit aims to boost female pilot presence
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Aviation experts from across Africa are set to gather at the 55th African Airlines Association (AFRAA) Annual General Assembly (AGA) in Kampala from November 19 to November 21. The assembly, hosting around 500 delegates, will delve into critical issues such as enhancing profitability for African airlines, fostering international cooperation, and increasing the involvement of women in the aviation sector.

Profitability Challenges in African Aviation

Ms. Jenifer Bamuturaki, the Chief Executive Officer of Uganda Airlines, highlighted the hurdles faced by African airlines in achieving profitability. High operational costs, particularly fuel expenses, pose a significant challenge. The assembly will provide a platform to address concerns related to operational costs, taxation, and losses incurred by airlines.

Challenges in African Aviation Profitability

Challenge Solutions Discussed
High Fuel Costs Collaborative Negotiations
Taxation Issues Advocacy for Fair Taxation
Operational Losses Partnerships and Code-sharing


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Ms. Bamuturaki emphasized the importance of working collaboratively through partnerships such as interlines and codeshares to mitigate challenges and improve overall profitability.

Connectivity and Protectionism

The assembly will also tackle the issue of protectionism practiced by many African countries, restricting airlines from direct penetration within the continent. The lack of connectivity due to protectionist policies will be addressed to foster a more open and connected African airspace.

Addressing Connectivity Challenges

Challenge Proposed Solutions
Protectionist Policies Advocacy for Open Skies Policies
Limited Connectivity Strategies for Direct Flight Routes


Uganda Airlines, which currently serves nine regional routes and two international routes, aims to foster collaboration among African airlines to establish more direct flight options, thereby overcoming geographical challenges.

Promoting Women’s Participation in Aviation

In an effort to encourage diversity, the assembly will discuss the establishment of a women’s association in aviation. Ms. Bamuturaki expressed the need to break gender barriers in the traditionally male-dominated industry. The initiative aligns with the International Air Transport Association’s commitment to diversity and inclusivity.

Empowering Women in Aviation

Initiative Objectives
Women’s Association in Aviation Encourage Female Participation
Diversity and Inclusivity Programs Promote Equality in the Industry


Ms. Betty Binen, acting Marketing and Business Development Officer at the Uganda Wildlife Conservation Education Centre, highlighted the positive impact of the conference on promoting tourism in Uganda.

The AFRAA Annual General Assembly stands as the premier aviation summit in Africa, drawing CEOs from African airlines, officials from the International Civil Aviation Organization, African Civil Aviation Commission, civil aviation authorities, service providers, and aircraft manufacturers.

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