The US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has confirmed that it will host three delegations of senior officials from South Africa’s aviation sector to the US in the coming months, under the newly launched ‘Aviation Initiative for South Africa’ unveiled earlier this week.
The initiative is additional to the other USTDA-led programmes that have been undertaken in the energy, telecommunications, transport and water sectors.
The agency, which seeks to promote the use of US products and services in infrastructure projects around the world, is also supporting a range of project feasibility studies in South Africa. In addition, it has hosted a series of workshops, technical visits and reverse trade missions across various sectors over the last few years.
Director Leocadia Zak, who visited South Africa as part of the recent mission led by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, reports that two of the visits will focus on introducing leaders from South African Airways (SAA) to US technologies, services and policies.
The third reverse trade mission will focus on safety and security within South Africa’s aviation sector through airport modernisations and state-of-the-art air traffic management technologies.
The aviation initiative has been launched in conjunction with General Electric Transportation, The Boeing Company, Airports Company of South Africa, South Africa's Air Traffic and Navigation Services, SAA, Southern African Women in Aviation and Aerospace, and the South African Civil Aviation Authority.
In addition to the three upcoming reverse trade missions, USTDA is also supporting an assessment of the Cape Town, King Shaka, and OR Tambo airports, which will recommend upgrades and improvements to airside capacity.