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Aviation News

SOEs in need of expert staff – Gordhan 

By: African News Agency      17th July 2019 South Africa's State-owned enterprises need technical experts to make up three-quarters of their staff, whereas at the moment up to half were administrative support staff, Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan said on Wednesday. "Three quarters of staff should be experts in each sector we... 

Donated headsets to go a long way in helping Kruger National Park pilots

By: Yvonne Silaule     15th July 2019 Bose Aviation and Century Avionics have stepped in to assist South African National Parks pilots to communicate better with ground crews by donating 34 Bose A20 aviation headsets to the Kruger National Park. Kruger National Park communications and marketing GM Ike Phaahla said the donation would... 

Donated headsets to go a long way in helping Kruger National Park pilots
Garmir da Costa

Mboweni promises contingency reserve funds for SAA, SABC, Denel

By: African News Agency      11th July 2019 Finance Minister Tito Mboweni on Thursday said he would allocate funding from the contingency reserve to shore up South African Airways, the South African Broadcasting Corporation and Denel but warned that the handouts should not be considered a "blank cheque".  Mboweni promised the lifelines to... 

SAA chair has quit – Gordhan

By: Reuters     11th July 2019 South African Airways' chairperson Johannes Bhekumuzi Magwaza has resigned, the country's Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan said on Thursday, the second senior figure at the struggling airline to leave this year.– Gordhan told Parliament that Magwaza tendered his resignation for personal... 

Global air transport association head has praise and concerns for South Africa

By: Rebecca Campbell     11th July 2019 While praising South Africa's high standards and advanced capabilities in the commercial aviation sector, International Air Transport Association director-general and CEO Alexandre de Juniac has urged the country to make a number of adjustments to maximize the economic benefits of aviation to the... 

Proflight Zambia announces plans for new service between Ndola and Johannesburg

By: African News Agency      11th July 2019 Proflight Zambia on Thursday announced plans for a new scheduled route between Ndola and Johannesburg, a move it said would boost trade and investment between the two cities. The new service, expected to begin on September 2, will link the Copperbelt mining and industry hub with South Africa’s... 

Iata meets with Zimbabwean government over blocked airline revenues

By: Rebecca Campbell     10th July 2019 A delegation from the International Air Transport Association (Iata) led by its director-general Alexandre de Juniac, met with Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa and other high-ranking government officials on Tuesday to discuss major issues concerning the airline industry and Zimbabwe, and... 

Iata meets with Zimbabwean government over blocked airline revenues
Zimbabwean flag

Airbus’ latest airliner continues to stack up orders

By: Rebecca Campbell     10th July 2019 From its launch at the Paris Air Show in mid-June to the end of that month, Europe-based global major aerospace group Airbus’ latest airliner, the A321XLR, has been ordered or selected by 14 airlines and one leasing company, with firm orders totalling 44 aircraft. Letters of intent cover another... 

Think-tank attacks State-owned regional airline for 'showing contempt for the law'

By: Rebecca Campbell     9th July 2019 The Free Market Foundation (FMF) think-tank has accused State-owned regional airline SA Express (SAX) of breaking the law by not responding to a request for information under the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA). The FMF made a PAIA request to SAX on May 31 regarding the troubled... 

Think-tank attacks State-owned regional airline for 'showing contempt for the law'
Photo by SA Express
A Bombardier CRJ700 regional jet in SA Express colours

Ethiopian crash families criticise Boeing over donation plan

By: Reuters     5th July 2019 The families of victims of an Ethiopian air disaster on Thursday criticised Boeing's plan to donate $100-million to unspecified charities and communities affected by two crashes, saying it was too vague and that families should have been consulted first. Some of the families said Wednesday's... 

Comair sees annual earnings boost from SAA payment

By: Reuters     5th July 2019 Airline Comair expects its full year headline earnings per share (HEPS) to rise by more than 20%, boosted by a $78-million payment from embattled state-owned airline South African Airways, it said on Thursday. HEPS, the main profit measure in South Africa, came in at 69.5 cents in the previous... 

South African unmanned aerial vehicle industry body created

By: Rebecca Campbell     5th July 2019 A representative body for the South African unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), or drone, sector was launched recently at Kyalami, north of Johannesburg. This is the South African Federation of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), officially abbreviated to Safu. (UAS is another term for drones; they are... 

World airline body’s regional head highlights benefits of and barriers to African aviation

By: Rebecca Campbell     5th July 2019 The importance, potential, and challenges facing commercial aviation in Africa were highlighted at the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Regional Aviation Forum, held late last month in Accra, Ghana. “Aviation is a key enabler for economic and social prosperity in Africa,”... 

SAA welcomes Bezuidenhout back as Mango CEO

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     2nd July 2019 The board of South African Airways on Tuesday expressed its support for the appointment of Nico Bezuidenhout as CEO of its subsidiary, Mango Airlines, effective October 1. This appointment of a permanent CEO at Mango was a further step in stabilising leadership and strengthening the executive... 

SAA welcomes Bezuidenhout back as Mango CEO
Photo by Creamer Media
Nico Bezuidenhout

SAA is leasing new-generation wide-body airliners 

By: Rebecca Campbell     1st July 2019 State-owned national flag carrier South African Airways (SAA) announced on Sunday that it had leased latest-generation Airbus A350-900 aircraft to operate its Johannesburg-New York route. The new, twin-engined, aircraft will replace the four-engined older generation Airbus A340-600 airliners... 

SAA is leasing new-generation wide-body airliners
Photo by Airbus
An Airbus A350-900 in the livery of China Southern Airlines

World airline body calls for international alignment on restoring airworthiness of 737 MAX

By: Rebecca Campbell     28th June 2019 National aviation safety regulators should continue to align their technical validation timelines and requirements for the safe restoration to service of the Boeing 737 MAX airliner, the International Air Transport Association (Iata) has urged. The association also urged that there be alignment... 

World airline body calls for international alignment on restoring airworthiness of 737 MAX
Photo by Comair
The first Boeing 737 MAX acquired by South African operator Comair, in British Airways colours

Airbus unveils new wing-tip technology

By: Rebecca Campbell     28th June 2019 Only days before the recent Paris Air Show, Europe-based giant aerospace group Airbus announced that it had successfully flown a remote-controlled scale-model aircraft (based on the Airbus A321 single-aisle airliner and designated AlbatrossOne) fitted with flapping wing-tips. This is the first... 

Aerospace technology leaders reaffirm emission-cutting ambitions

By: Rebecca Campbell     28th June 2019 At the recent 2019 Paris Air Show, the Chief Technology Officers (CTOs) of seven of the world’s major aerospace companies issued a joint statement on their joint and cooperative commitment to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by the aviation industry. The companies were, in alphabetical... 

Fastjet's hope for profit pinned on Zimbabwe currency – CEO

By: Reuters     27th June 2019 Low-cost African airline Fastjet Plc expects to be profitable on an underlying basis in 2019, Chief Executive Officer Nico Bezuidenhout said on Thursday, a year after a cash crunch nearly drove the carrier into administration, The airline, which operates in South Africa, Mozambique and Zimbabwe,... 

Gordhan says SOEs in dire straits, threatens boards and CEOs with intervention

By: News24Wire      26th June 2019 South Africa’s State-owned companies are in a parlous state and if the boards and management of these organisations do not do what government expects of them, it won’t hesitate to intervene to ensure proper governance and financial management, says Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan. He... 

Gordhan says SOEs in dire straits, threatens boards and CEOs with intervention
Photo by Reuters
Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan

Airline body regional head highlights importance of aviation to Africa’s development

By: Rebecca Campbell     25th June 2019 The importance and potential of, and challenges facing, commercial aviation in Africa were highlighted at the International Air Transport Association (Iata) Regional Aviation Forum, in Accra, Ghana, on Monday. “Aviation is a key enabler for economic and social prosperity in Africa,” highlighted... 

Denel confirms salary cut; union expresses shock and concern

By: Rebecca Campbell     25th June 2019 State-owned defence industrial group Denel confirmed on Tuesday that it will pay its staff only 85% of their salaries for this month. “Due to ongoing liquidity challenges we are now faced with unfortunate reality that the company is not in a position to fulfil the 100% salary obligation,” stated... 

Denel confirms salary cut; union expresses shock and concern
Photo by Duane Daws/Creamer Media
Some of the Denel Group’s products on display – in the foreground, an Umkhonto naval surface-to-air missile, with a Badger infantry fighting vehicle behind, and just visible in the left background, a Seeker unmanned aerial vehicle

Air Tanzania to reintroduce flights to South Africa

By: African News Agency      24th June 2019 Air Tanzania is to resume flights to South Africa on Friday in a bid to attract South African tourists and business travellers. The revived passenger schedule will connect four major airports in Tanzania with OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg with four direct flights per week on... 

Rolls-Royce reports strong progress in its civil aerospace 'IntelligentEngine' initiative

By: Rebecca Campbell     24th June 2019 UK-based global major power plant manufacturer Rolls-Royce has reported that its “IntelligentEngine” philosophy (also referred to as a vision) is making strong progress throughout its Civil Aerospace products and services “portfolio”, powerfully driven by the capabilities of digital technology.... 

Rolls-Royce reports strong progress in its civil aerospace 'IntelligentEngine' initiative
Photo by Rolls-Royce
Trent 1000 civil aeroengines on a Rolls-Royce production line

South African drone sector association created 

By: Rebecca Campbell     21st June 2019 A representative body for the South African unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), or drone, sector was launched on Thursday evening at Kyalami, north of Johannesburg. This is the South African Federation of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS – another term for drones), officially abbreviated to Safu.... 

South African drone sector association created

Aerospace giants displaying their wares at Paris

By: Rebecca Campbell     21st June 2019 Global major aerospace groups Airbus and Boeing are both using the current Paris Air Show (at Le Bourget Airport) to display innovative technologies and programmes. Airbus will also be marking its 50th birthday. Both companies will have commercial and military, fixed- and rotary-wing, aircraft on... 

Sierra Leone President opens bids for 7 km airport bridge

By: Reuters     20th June 2019 Sierra Leone's President opened a tender process on Wednesday for building a 7 km bridge at a cost of up to $2-billion to link Freetown to the country's only international airport. Freetown International Airport at Lungi is currently accessible only by boat or helicopter, separated from the... 

Five things to watch out for in Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation speech

By: Bloomberg     20th June 2019 South African President Cyril Ramaphosa on Thursday delivers his first state-of-the-nation speech since the ruling party extended its quarter-century grip on power in last month’s election. His address to Parliament in Cape Town is scheduled to begin at 19:00. Here are five key things to watch... 

Five things to watch out for in Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation speech

Kenyan lawmakers propose nationalisation of Kenya Airways

By: Bloomberg     19th June 2019 Kenya’s Parliamentary transport committee proposed the nationalisation of Kenya Airways after rejecting the airline’s proposal to allow it to manage the nation’s biggest airport. The committee proposed creating a holding company with four subsidiaries including the carrier and the Jomo Kenyatta... 

Aviation technology leaders reaffirm their determination to cut industry’s CO2 emissions

By: Rebecca Campbell     18th June 2019 At the 2019 Paris Air Show on Tuesday, the Chief Technology Officers (CTOs) of seven of the world’s major aerospace companies issued a joint statement on their joint and cooperative commitment to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by the aviation industry. The companies were, in alphabetical... 

Aviation technology leaders reaffirm their determination to cut industry’s CO2 emissions

State capture inquiry hears about 'Myeni's person' at SAA

By: News24Wire      18th June 2019 The judicial commission of inquiry into State capture on Tuesday heard from a former South African Airways executive about how she was advised by then board chairperson Dudu Myeni to interact with her "personal advisor". The airline's former chief financial officer Phumeza Nhantsi, a chartered... 

 State capture inquiry hears about 'Myeni's person' at SAA

Threats to embark on industrial action could hurt SAA, airline warns

By: Nadine James     18th June 2019 South African Airways (SAA) on Tuesday noted a “deep sense of disappointment” at the South African Airways Pilots’ Association’s (Saapa’s) comments that it may embark on industrial action in protest against the appointment of Zukisa Ramasia as the airline’s acting CEO. Saapa chairperson Captain... 

South Africa not the gateway to Africa, warns research house 

By: Irma Venter     18th June 2019 South Africa is not, as is so often punted, the gateway to Africa, says Africa House director Duncan Bonnett – this is a mere “influence illusion”. The country is more a gateway to Southern African, and not even all of that. 

South Africa not the gateway to Africa, warns research house

Airbus launches extra long range version of its best-selling airliner family

By: Rebecca Campbell     18th June 2019 At the Paris Air Show on Monday, global major aerospace group Airbus launched the latest version of its A321neo (new engine option) single-aisle airliner (itself the largest model in the A320neo family). This is the A321XLR, XLR standing for extra long range. This new version, which will enter... 

Airbus launches extra long range version of its best-selling airliner family
Photo by Airbus
Computer-generated image of the A321XLR

South African Express says that it is turning itself around

By: Rebecca Campbell     14th June 2019 South African State-owned regional airline SA Express (SAX) affirmed on Friday that it was making substantial progress in its turnaround programme. It has also been taking action against employees found to have been engaged in wrongdoing. All those employees who have been charged with offences,... 

South African Express says that it is turning itself around
A CRJ-700 of SA Express

Airbus signs amended contract with launch customers for A400M airlifter

By: Rebecca Campbell     14th June 2019 The Airbus group announced in Amsterdam on Friday that it had signed an amendment to its contract with OCCAR (the French acronym for the Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation) for the A400M military airlift aircraft. The OCCAR member states are Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the... 

Airbus signs amended contract with launch customers for A400M airlifter
Photo by Airbus
An Airbus A400M

Comair’s new CEOs to press ahead with diversification strategy

By: Rebecca Campbell     14th June 2019 South African private-sector airline group Comair announced at the end of last month, via a Stock Exchange News Service release at the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, that it was acquiring the “shares and claims” of Star Air Maintenance and Star Air Cargo. The deal involves paying the sellers... 

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