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Aviation News

Ethiopian aims to fly Max jet by January after Boeing settlement

By: Bloomberg     2nd September 2021 Ethiopian Airlines Group plans to resume flights with the Boeing 737 Max jet by early next year after reaching an out-of-court settlement with the US planemaker over a deadly crash in March 2019. CEO Tewolde GebreMariam is now convinced “beyond reasonable doubt” the model is safe after various... 

Iata reports air passenger traffic is improving, but is still well down on 2019 levels

By: Rebecca Campbell     2nd September 2021 The International Air Transport Association (Iata), the global representative body for the airline industry, has reported that both international and domestic air passenger traffic in July remained well below the levels achieved before the Covid-19 pandemic. However, the July figures also showed... 

SAA buyer close to completing due diligence

By: Bloomberg     1st September 2021 South Africa said the private group looking to take a majority stake in the country’s dormant national airline is close to completing due diligence ahead of a planned resumption of flights later this month. The Takatso consortium has yet to identify any material issues that would scupper the... 

South African pilot wins international aviation award

By: Rebecca Campbell     1st September 2021 Aviation digital ‘hub’ AeroTime has awarded an Aviation Achievement Award to South African pilot and ‘social entrepreneur’ Refilwe Ledwaba. This was in recognition of her creation and development of the non-profit Girls Fly Programme in Africa Foundation. She is the 23rd person to receive the... 

A photo of Refilwe Ledwaba
Photo by AeroTime
Refilwe Ledwaba

July saw continued increase in demand for air cargo

By: Rebecca Campbell     1st September 2021 The global representative body for the airline industry, the International Air Transport Association (Iata), has reported that air cargo markets worldwide continued to register strong growth during July. (Because of the extreme market-distorting effects of the Covid-19 pandemic last year, Iata... 

Kulula to restart flights between Gauteng and the Eastern Cape

By: Rebecca Campbell     1st September 2021 South African low cost carrier Kulula, one of the brands of the Comair group, announced on Tuesday that it was reinstating its route between Johannesburg and East London. Flights on this route would resume on September 4. “We have listened to our customers who have been eagerly awaiting for us to... 

Global airline losses reduced during the second quarter: North America even saw net profits

By: Rebecca Campbell     31st August 2021 The global airline industry’s representative body, the International Air Transport Association (Iata), has reported that the aggregated losses of the sector had decreased during the second quarter of this year (Q2 2021) in comparison to the first quarter. The data was released in Iata’s Airlines... 

Kenya Airways reports fall in total revenues but surge in cargo income

By: Rebecca Campbell     27th August 2021 Kenya Airways, the East African country’s national flag carrier, released its financial results for the first half of this year (1H21) in a virtual investor briefing on Thursday afternoon. The group’s total revenues, of 27.35-billion Kenya shillings (Kshs), represented a 9% decrease (apparently,... 

Etihad Airways and IAI announce partnership to convert Boeing 777 airliners to freighters

By: Rebecca Campbell     26th August 2021 Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE), based Etihad Airways has entered into a partnership with Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) to convert Boeing 777-300ER airliners into freighter aircraft, a process known as P2F for short. The P2F conversion for the 777-300ER was jointly launched in 2019 by... 

Comair confirms operational restart next week

By: Rebecca Campbell     26th August 2021 South African private sector airline group Comair confirmed on Wednesday that it would resume scheduled operations on September 1, as planned. The company, which operates the British Airways (in South Africa) and Kulula low cost carrier brands, had temporarily suspended its services on July 5,... 

South African Airways to restart operations from Sept 23

By: Reuters     26th August 2021 South Africa's State-owned national carrier South African Airways (SAA) will restart flying between limited destinations from Sept. 23, it said on Twitter, a year after it halted operations as it failed to pay its debt. Last month the government had said that it was selling a 51% stake in the... 

Airliner-to-freighter conversion centre being established in Ethiopia

By: Rebecca Campbell     25th August 2021 The Ethiopian Airlines Group has announced that it has entered into a partnership with Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) to set up a world class centre in the African country, which will convert Boeing 767-300ER airliners into freighter aircraft (designated 767 P2F). The airline group can already... 

Hospitality body warns of serious consequences of suspension of flights to Plettenberg Bay

By: Rebecca Campbell     23rd August 2021 The Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa (Fedhasa) has warned that the halting of commercial flights into Plettenberg Bay Airport would hurt the region’s tourism sector, which in turn would hit the wider regional economy. Located in the extreme southeast of the Western Cape province,... 

Dallas Fort Worth Airport to expand its cargo capacity as demand recovers

By: Rebecca Campbell     19th August 2021 Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW), located in the US state of Texas and the world’s number four airport in terms of flight operations, will launch the first stage of a three-stage air cargo expansion project late this year. This was reported by DFW Executive VP: Global Strategy and... 

An image of the cargo terminal at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport
Photo by Dallas Fort Worth International Airport
Dallas Forth Worth cargo terminal

Air transport body reports business confidence within the sector is starting to improve

By: Rebecca Campbell     19th August 2021 The International Air Transport Association (Iata) – the representative body for the global airline industry – has released its Airline Business Confidence Index for last month. This shows that business confidence within the sector has started recovering, albeit slowly. The index is based on a... 

Global air transport body calls on governments to release blocked airline funds

By: Rebecca Campbell     19th August 2021 The International Air Transport Association (Iata) on Thursday called on governments that are blocking the repatriation of airline funds to cease doing so. The association, which is the representative body of the global airline industry, pointed out that the blocking of these funds was a... 

Local carrier Airlink and global airline Emirates enter codeshare agreement

By: Rebecca Campbell     17th August 2021 South African private-sector regional airline Airlink and Dubai, United Arab Emirates, -based global major carrier Emirates announced on Monday that they had agreed to widen their existing partnership and enter into a codesharing agreement. The codeshare was to be “unilateral”, their press... 

DPE welcomes court decision to place Mango airline under business rescue

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     11th August 2021 The Department of Public Enterprises has welcomed the High Court’s decision this week to place low-cost airline Mango under business recue, effective from July 28. The boards of South African Airways (SAA) and Mango took a resolution to place Mango under business recue owing to financial and... 

Kenyan, Azerbaijani, air cargo airlines sign interline agreement

By: Rebecca Campbell     10th August 2021 Dedicated air cargo operators Astral Aviation, based in Kenya, and Silk Way West Airlines, of Azerbaijan, announced on Tuesday that they had signed an interline agreement. This will provide cross-selling benefits to both companies and give each access to the other’s network. The two operators’... 

Brazilian airliner manufacturer secures another order from major US client

By: Rebecca Campbell     10th August 2021 Embraer, the Brazilian aerospace group that is the world number one manufacturer of jet airliners with up to 150 seats, announced on Monday that it had received an order for a further 16 E175 aircraft from US operator SkyWest Airlines. The contract is worth $798.4-million. The E175 can carry up... 

Petrochem giant uses tech for greener fuel

By: Halima Frost     6th August 2021 In April JSE-listed synthetic fuels and chemicals company Sasol announced it will work alongside a consortium comprising multinational chemical company Linde, renewable energy company Enertrag and investment company Navitas Holdings to bid in concept for the production of sustainable aviation... 

An image of a Sasol Chemicals plant
COOL COLAB The collaboration between Sasol and the LEN Consortium will see greener jet fuel and chemicals being produced using Sasol's Fischer-Tropsch technology

Airlink to resume services to Nampula in Mozambique

By: Rebecca Campbell     5th August 2021 South African private-sector regional airline Airlink announced on Thursday that it would restart its direct service between Johannesburg and Nampula in Mozambique. The service would recommence on September 16. Bookings had already been reopened for the route, which had been suspended in March... 

US helicopter company has released advanced vertical take-off aircraft design concepts

By: Rebecca Campbell     5th August 2021 Renowned US helicopter manufacturer Bell Textron this week unveiled design concepts for future high-speed vertical take-off and landing (HSVTOL) aircraft. These design concepts make use of technologies being developed by the company, which is part of the Textron group. HSVTOL technology would... 

An image of three HSVTOL design concepts
Photo by Bell Textron
Three HSVTOL design concepts

Iata statistics show Covid-19 affected its six regions differently

By: Rebecca Campbell     4th August 2021 In percentage terms, Africa suffered the third worse fall in air passenger numbers last year, the Iata World Air Transport Statistics document, published on Tuesday, has shown. Iata is the International Air Transport Association, the representative body of the global airline industry. African air... 

Iata statistics confirm depth of airline industry crisis last year

By: Rebecca Campbell     4th August 2021 The release on Tuesday of the International Air Transport Association’s (Iata’s) “Iata World Air Transport Statistics” report, covering 2020, has confirmed with hard data the depth of the crisis that afflicted the global aviation industry last year, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. (Iata is... 

Delta restarts Johannesburg-Atlanta flights

By: Rebecca Campbell     3rd August 2021 Major US carrier Delta Air Lines has reinstated direct flights between Atlanta, in the US state of Georgia, and Johannesburg. Atlanta is where the airline is headquartered, and the reinstitution of the direct link between the two cities comes 15 years after the route was originally established,... 

Recovery in air passenger demand remains weak, reports Iata

By: Rebecca Campbell     29th July 2021 Air passenger demand remains well below the levels experienced before the Covid-19 pandemic, although there has been a minor improvement in both international and domestic air travel numbers, the International Air Transport Association (Iata) reported on Wednesday. Iata is the representative body... 

Global air transport body reports continued strong air cargo demand

By: Rebecca Campbell     29th July 2021 During the first half of this year (1H21), the global air cargo market recorded its strongest semester of growth since 2017. This was reported by the International Air Transport Association (Iata), the representative body of the global airline and air cargo industry, when it released, on... 

Iata adds environmental sustainability to its range of aviation training courses

By: Rebecca Campbell     26th July 2021 The global representative body of the airline industry, the International Air Transport Association (Iata), announced on Monday that it had added an environmental sustainability training programme to its range of training initiatives. The new programme is being delivered in cooperation with... 

Mango Airlines to enter business rescue

By: Reuters     26th July 2021 South African Airways (SAA) subsidiary Mango Airlines will enter a local form of bankruptcy protection known as business rescue, SAA's interim chief executive Thomas Kgokolo told eNCA television on Monday. The budget carrier is the fourth South African airline to be placed under business rescue... 

Rolls-Royce marks major step forward in hybrid-electric aircraft propulsion project

By: Rebecca Campbell     26th July 2021 UK-based industrial technology group Rolls-Royce announced late last week that the generator and associated power electronics for the aerospace world’s most powerful hybrid-electric aircraft power and propulsion system had been delivered to its recently renovated Testbed 108 in Bristol in the UK.... 

Embraer reports its commercial aircraft delivery and backlog figures for the second quarter

By: Rebecca Campbell     23rd July 2021 Brazilian aerospace group Embraer on Wednesday reported its commercial aircraft deliveries and order backlogs during the second quarter of this year (2Q21). The company’s commercial aircraft business is divided into airliners and executive (business) jets. During 2Q21, Embraer delivered 14... 

An image of an Embraer E190 airliner of South African airline Airlink
Photo by Airlink
A standard Embraer E190 airliner of South African airline Airlink

Iata head warns of effects of blocking of airline funds by a number of African countries

By: Rebecca Campbell     21st July 2021 The global representative body of the airline industry, the International Air Transport Association (Iata) has highlighted the problem of countries blocking the repatriation of funds by international airlines. This was a particularly severe problem in Africa, Iata director-general Willie Walsh... 

Aerospace group Embraer announces major order from Canadian airline

By: Rebecca Campbell     15th July 2021 Brazilian aerospace and defence group Embraer has announced that it has received a $5.82-billion order from Canada’s Porter Airlines for 30 E195-E2 jet airliners, with options for another 50. The announced value of the contract assumes all the options will be exercised and that the aircraft will... 

Boeing wins new order for freighter versions of its 737-800 airliner

By: Rebecca Campbell     13th July 2021 Commercial aircraft leasing and financing group BBAM has placed a firm order for 12 more Boeing 737-800BCF freighter aircraft. BCF stands for Boeing Converted Freighter and indicates that the aircraft will be converted from standard 737-800 airliners into dedicated freighters. BBAM had previously... 

Comair extends its voluntary flight suspension due to prolongation of Level 4 lockdown

By: Rebecca Campbell     13th July 2021 South African private-sector airline group Comair announced on Tuesday that it was extending its voluntary suspension of scheduled flights by both its brands until August 31. Comair’s brands are British Airways (operated by Comair) and low cost carrier Kulula.com. This decision follows South... 

Iata ready to help airlines with their post-pandemic training and retraining challenges

By: Rebecca Campbell     9th July 2021 With the end of the Covid-19 pandemic now in sight, the global aviation industry has major re-training and training requirements to address, International Air Transport Association (Iata) senior VP commercial products and services Frédéric Leger has pointed out. He was addressing the second day... 

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