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Press Releases

Media Release
1 February 2019


This year’s annual Aviation Africa summit and exhibition is hosting more Director Generals and airline heads than ever before. The event takes place in Kigali, Rwanda (27-28 Feb 2019).

Colonel Silas Udahemuka - Director General, Rwanda Civil Aviation Authority will be hosting VIP guests including the Director General of Togo Civil Aviation Authority, Latta Dokisime Gnama & Mr Simon Allotey, Director General of Ghana Civil Aviation Authority.

Joining the CAA delegates will also be FAA executive Director International Affairs Mr Chris Rochereau and FAA Director Africa Mr Grady Stone.

From Benin Civil Aviation Authority, Mr Karl Legba Director General and Nathalie Houndeton, Directrice, will also be attending.

Representing the defence industry Major General Charles Karamba, Chief of Staff, Rwandan Defence Force will host Général de Brigade Souleymane BAMBA and Colonel Siaka SOUNTOURA de from the Mali Air Force.

Speakers will take to the stage including those from the defence, MRO, Space and Airline industries across the two days.

Just some of the speakers include:

  • H.E. Faure Gnassingbe - President of the Tongolese Republic, Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States
  • Tefera Mekonnen Tefera, Secretary General, AFCAC
  • Abdullah Al-Sayed - President & CEO, NEXUS Group
  • Boni Dibate, Director Africa Affairs, CANSO
  • Barry Kashambo - Regional Director Eastern & Southern Africa, ICAO
  • Dr Adriana Marais - Head of Innovation SAP Africa, Director, South Africa Space Foundation
  • H.E. Akbar Al Baker - CEO Qatar Airways, Chairman IATA
  • Abderahmane Berthe - Secretary General, African Airlines Association
  • Sanjeev Gadhia - CEO, Astral Aviation
  • Rolland Besoa Razafimaharo - Directeur General, Air Madagascar
  • Ladislaus Matindi, CEO, Air Tanzania
  • Yvonne Manzi Makolo - CEO, RwandAir
  • Vincenzo De Laurentis - CEO & General Manager, EU Wings
  • Richard Haas - VP Africa, Lufthansa Technik
  • Rahul Shah - Senior VP - Strategic Growth & BD Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa, AAR

The event - which is run by Times Aerospace - began in Dubai four years ago. The UAE was selected because of its hub status and ease of visa rulings. This is a philosophy shared by Rwanda, which offers a visa-free entry to African countries and entry on arrival to others, said Times Aerospace managing director Mark Brown. "The beauty of this means that we have visitors, speakers, exhibitors and key government delegations coming from all over Africa," he said.

Aviation Africa features an exhibition alongside the summit with 100 aerospace companies including OEMs Gulfstream, Boeing and Bombardier alongside African exhibitors such as SP Aviation and Bugasera Airport Company. The event’s host sponsors are Nexus & Wyvern. Over 800 delegates are expected to attend the 4th Aviation Africa.

Aviation Africa is supported by the Government of Rwanda, Rwanda Civil Aviation Authority, Rwanda Development Board and the Rwanda Defence Force and the official airline is Rwandair.


Photo: Rolland Besoa Razafimaharo

Photo: Abderahmane Berthe

Media Release
29 November 2018


While heated debate continues over the commercial and political value of Africa’s Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM), one global civil aviation expert will use the Aviation Africa Summit and Exhibition in Kigali on 27 & 28 February 2019 to outline essential plans for another single sky – one focusing on search and rescue (SAR).

Keynote speaker Brian Day will deliver a controversial presentation on Aspiring to a Single SAR Sky over Africa. The Australian former air traffic controller will be addressing African government ministers, directors-general of civil aviation authorities and vitally, assembled Air Chiefs from African defence forces when the summit takes place on 27 & 28 February 2019.

Day was Australia’s national manager for aviation search and rescue before becoming the ICAO HQ Technical Officer, SAR, for eight years where he facilitated the development of provisions for the delivery of global civil aviation SAR services, conducting many technical cooperation missions worldwide and assisting in the provision of emergency response to distressed States such as Kosovo, Sudan, Iraq and Lebanon. For five years he managed the ICAO/AFCAC SAR Project to Africa when he evaluated and provided advice to some 35 African states, and was a SAR advisor to the UAE’s Air Force and its civil aviation authority.

Day believes it is essential that African states and the international aviation community takes urgent action to develop a fit-for-purpose SAR network. "If a worthwhile project is to get airborne, it will need to be with support from IFATCA, IFALPA, CANSO, ACI, ICAO, IATA and, not least, the airlines," he said. The international bodies, along with airlines and CAAs will be at Aviation Africa in force. Day said that the African SAR scene is especially compelling, both in its long-continuing dysfunction and its scope for vast and rapid improvement.

"The maritime SAR community has shown we aviation-types the way to better organisation by consolidating its many state Maritime Rescue Coordination Centres (MRCCs), many of which were non-compliant, into five regional MRCCs. We in aviation could easily do the same if the industry’s will was to be so inclined," he said. "The time is now overdue for us to commit to an Africa-wide organisation of aviation RCCs that are seamlessly knit together into a single system of SAR excellence. "Just as a single sky gives prospect of improved commercial options, so a single SAR sky would provide a safety net able to ensure that when an airline catastrophe occurs over the continent, it will not be grossly magnified and ineffectually broadened by wholesale SAR incompetence," he said.


Photo: Brian Day

Media Release
22 November 2018


Africa remains one of the greatest potential markets for air transport on the globe and this year's annual Aviation Africa summit and exhibition will explore even further afield with the show organisers promising speakers that are both down to earth and out of this world. The event takes place in Kigali, Rwanda (27-28 Feb 2019).

Headline presenters include one of the top names among airline CEOs, the current chairman of the International Air Transport Organisation (IATA) and the CEO of the successful Middle Eastern carrier Qatar Airways, H.E. Akbar Al Baker; and stretching destinations even further is globally recognised inspirational speaker Dr Adriana Marais, the South African set to become Africa's first extra-terrestrial when she completes her one-way mission to Mars.

The event - which is run by Times Aerospace- began in Dubai four years ago. The UAE was selected because of its hub status and ease of visa rulings. This is a philosophy shared by Rwanda, which offers a visa-free entry to African countries and entry on arrival to others, said Times Aerospace managing director Mark Brown. "The beauty of this means that we have visitors, speakers, exhibitors and key government delegations coming from all over Africa," he said.

Akbar Al Baker, will be centre stage for the air transport segment of the summit.
"Qatar is one of the airlines that has been expanding into Africa in recent years," Brown said. "There has often been concern expressed by African airlines about the growth of non-African airlines, but I think many of them may not have heard Mr Al Baker share his views. I know they are in for a treat." Mr Al Baker will be on stage for a one-on-one interview with summit chairman Alan Peaford MBE.

Airline leaders from across Africa - both from English-speaking and Francophone countries - will be also talking at or visiting the summit, which will be addressing issues such as protectionism, search and rescue, infrastructure, airline finance, aviation services, regulation and innovation.

Stepping into the unknown will be key to the presentation by Dr Marais - a quantum biologist, a theoretical physicist, the director of the South Africa Space Foundation and head of innovation for SAP Africa. She is part of the Mars One project which is currently going through its selection process to take 24 astronauts to move to the Red Planet and begin building a society there. "She is an incredible speaker and has been inspiring school children and adults to look up to the skies and think about the new horizons - and what value space exploration can bring to earth. She genuinely changes the way people think about our planet and it is fantastic that she will be sharing her incredible story here on her own continent."


Photo: H.E. Akbar Al Baker, CEO, Qatar Airways

Photo:  Dr Adriana Marais, Director of the South Africa Space Foundation and Head of Innovation for SAP Africa



Note to editors:
Aviation Africa is organised by TIMES Aerospace Ltd in partnership with Aerocomm Ltd and Access Group. TIMES Aerospace Ltd has organised 3 previous editions of Aviation Africa in Dubai, Kigali & Cairo. The 2018 event attracted 850 delegates & 110 exhibitors.
For Press information please contact: Alison Weller, +44 7501 185255.

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