Source: The Department of Transport
Title: SA: Ndebele: Address by the Minister of Transport, at the BARSA Conference, Durban
MEC for Economic Development and Tourism Mr Michael Mabuyakhulu
CEO of BARSA Mr Allen Moore
Captains of the Aviation Industry
Members of the Media
Ladies and Gentlemen
A total of 3.1 million spectators attended the 64 matches of the 2010 FIFA World Cup tournament. This is the third highest aggregate attendance behind the United States in 1994 and Germany in 2006. Millions more travelled to the fan fests, public viewing areas and other entertainment centres to watch the matches.
In just one month, in addition to daily normal commuting services millions of fans criss-crossed a country three times the size of Germany with relative ease! The majority of them relied on public transport, mainly aeroplanes, taxis, buses and trains.
We had acknowledged beforehand that given the deep-seated historical legacy of apartheid-inspired geographical separation access and mobility was going to be a challenge in hosting the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
Today is just over two months after the World Cup. We can stand with pride and say we conquered. Yet we as a people are yet to comprehend the meaning and magnitude of this success. We were perhaps too close to the action to as yet understand the massive value of the successful hosting of the World Cup.
We invested billions of rand to ensure a safe, efficient and reliable public transportation system for the World Cup. This investment included customer-focused and world-class airports, upgraded train stations and refurbished coaches to luxury buses and integrated rapid public transport networks such as the bus rapid transit system. The transport milestones developed during the 2010 FIFA World Cup now form part of the lasting legacy that will be enjoyed by generations of South Africans for many decades, long after the World Cup has come and gone.
Credit for the transport achievements during the World Cup needs to go to members of the Transport Family including all spheres of government, in particular to host cities, and a range of parastatal entities in the aviation, rail and road sectors. We also today salute the private sector public transport operators, local bus and coach operators and, indeed, the often maligned minibus-taxi industry who have all come to the party and done us proud. In this instance we would like to salute the aviation industry in general and members of BARSA in particular.
The 2010 FIFA World Cup was perhaps one of the most aviation heavy world cups in the history of FIFA.
Through the Airports Company South Africa's (ACSA) we invested R20 billion in the airports development programme. This included the OR Tambo Airport Central Terminal Building upgrade, the Cape Town Airport Terminal upgrade, the Bloemfontein Airport runway rehabilitation and airport upgrade as well as the new Durban King Shaka Airport.
Traffic levels at airports were significantly higher with the Aeronautical Information Management Unit (AIMU) processing large numbers of flights. Air traffic was nearly double the daily average that airports handle. Passenger Processing Systems at all airports were significantly improved. Air Traffic and Navigation Services (ATNS) also played a critical role in terms of aircraft movements in and out of each airport.
For most of Sunday, 11 July morning, ahead of the World Cup final between Spain and the Netherlands, an aircraft was touching down every two minutes at O R Tambo International Airport. On Sunday, 11 July and Monday, 12 July OR Tambo facilitated more than 1 400 aircraft movements, carrying well over 160 000 passengers. The total number of aircraft handled between 1 June and 12 July at the three main international airports amounted to 58 045 - OR Tambo (35 964), Cape Town (14 600) and King Shaka (7 481).
ROLE OF AVIATION IN INTEGRATING REGIONS
So what is the future of aviation after the World Cup? The development of infrastructure in general and air services in particular, is paramount for the future of Africa as we embark on closer integration with the world economy and increase efforts to improve living standards.
Aviation in Africa or anywhere else cannot be developed in isolation from other regions. We are therefore called upon to provide and maintain world-class standards at every turn. In this regard in September we will attend the 37th Assembly of ICAO to be held in Canada where we will promote Africa's role and as an integral part of the governance of aviation.
We are ready become global competitors while our airport infrastructure meets economic growth and socio economic goals of our country. This is the legacy of the World Cup. Our country continues to share experiences with the world. In preparation for UEFA 2012 the Ukrainian aviation authorities have visited South Africa to learn about how we managed the FIFA 2010 World Cup operations. In preparation for 2014 Brazilian aviation authorities have also visited ACSA and will return in the near future to learn from our experiences of managing the 2010 FIFA World Cup operations. The Beijing Airport Authority is pursuing discussions with us on more frequencies for flights between China and South Africa.
CHALLENGES TO AVIATION
Even though we are flying high the aviation industry faces a number of challenges. This includes risks we can prevent and risks that the industry cannot prevent. Recently we had global adversity such as the recent financial crisis. Our industry was also tested by events such as 9/11, the N1 H1 virus and the volcanic ash cloud in Europe among others.
The other great risk we face is the lack of appropriate skill to meet the requirements of growth for the industry.
According to Boeing the commercial aviation industry will need more than a million pilots and maintenance personnel in the next 20 years. Asia will account for almost 40 percent of demand. Boeing said on Thursday it estimated world demand at 466,650 pilots and 596,500 maintenance personnel from 2010 to 2029, of whom 180,600 pilots and 220,000 maintenance personnel would be needed in Asia, particularly in China. According to Boeing in the next 20 years,
• North America will need 97,350 pilots and 137,000 maintenance personnel
• Europe will require 94,800 pilots and 122,000 maintenance personnel.
Maintenance personnel include engineers and mechanics. Our challenge is adapting our training to engage the future generation of people who will fly and maintain the more than 30,000 airplanes that will be delivered by 2029. According to Boeing the world commercial aviation fleet is forecast to grow from 18,890 planes in 2009 to 36,300 in 2029. Airline association IATA said recently that global air travel had grown faster than expected in June 2010 led by a sharp improvement in Asia, particularly in China, following a severe slowdown during the global recession.
Faced with these challenges we have seen efficiencies being introduced in airport designs and layout, airline alliances, better information and telecommunication technologies being introduced by this industry. We have moved very quickly from being an industry merely consisting of runways and terminal buildings into airport metropolis across the globe, bringing people from different soils closer together.
The change has been revolutionary. It is evident wherever one travels around the world that there is a stronger presence of industrial and service sectors in the vicinity of the airport. We see transport logistic operations, high-value-added sectors, exhibitions and conference centre's, hotels, restaurants, businesses, trade, manufacturing plants, retail outlets and a combination of commercial and private residences amongst others. In fact the list continues to grow and grow. This is the fantastic effect which airports bring to our surroundings.
The Airports of old are turning into Airport Cities. The advent of Airport cities tells us about the potential and actual role of airports in the socio-economy of a country. As a catalyst of economic development, the airport city has become a focal driver for future urban development. In this regard therefore some of the areas we have to focus on to drive growth as the aviation industry include:
• Physical development
• Environmental Management
• Urban Renewal
• ICT Infrastructure
• Economic Diversification
• Job Creation
• Skills Development
• Tourism Promotion
• Investment Promotion and
• Safety and Security,
STATE OF INTERNATIONAL AVIATION
According to International Air Transport Association (IATA) airline balance sheets have improved this year in part because of a sharp increase in business-class fares. The IATA estimated that average ticket costs for business-class flights have risen 8 percent in the first half of 2010. Business travellers make up 8 percent of overall passenger numbers but contribute 27 percent of ticket revenue IATA said in its latest snapshot of the airline business.
IATA said the number of passengers seated in premium class remained 8 percent below the pre-recession peak, though economy travel is now 3 percent above its pre-recession level. IATA said most of the economy passengers are travelling for personal purposes, but growth in this travel class continues to be driven by business travellers sitting on economy seats rather than holidaymakers.
Our country continues to share experiences with the world. In preparation for UEFA 2012 the Ukrainian aviation authorities have visited South Africa to learn about how we managed the FIFA 2010 World Cup operations. In preparation for 2014 Brazilian aviation authorities have also visited ACSA and will return in the near future to learn from our experiences of managing the 2010 FIFA World Cup operations. The Beijing Airport Authority is pursuing discussions with us on more frequencies for flights between China and South Africa.
AVIATION SAFETY AND SECURITY
Department will be working on the establishment of the Aviation Safety Investigation Board as well as the Appeals Committee as enshrined in the new Act. As the Minister of Transport, I view aviation security as a priority. The new Act is stringent on security issues, especially as it will mete out harsher sentences and penalties.
In addition we must remember that the inherent requirement for airlines to have a National Security Aviation Plan is prescribed in the Act. We therefore call on all airlines to ensure that they familiarize themselves with the new Civil Aviation Act and that they comply with the necessary requirements of the Act.
In addition to this where do we stand in matters of safety:
• South Africa has a very good Civil Aviation Safety and Security oversight system provided by the South African Civil Aviation Authority.
• South Africa performed well in the ICAO Universal Safety Oversight Audit Program.
• South Africa also passed and maintained the Federal Aviation Administration International Aviation Safety Assessment audit, thus0 retaining a FAA Category 1 status.
• President Jacob Zuma has proclaimed the Civil Aviation Act 13 of 2009. It came into effect from the 01st April 2010.
We are therefore pleased to announce that in the forthcoming year the Department will ensure that key elements of the Act are implemented.
To maintain high safety standards in the transport sector, the Department will promulgate regulations to improve compliance with the International Civil Aviation Organization. The Department will ensure the establishment of the Aviation Safety Investigation Board which as a fully independent body sets out to investigate aircraft incidents and accidents and make safety recommendations for the betterment of civil aviation safety.
The Department seeks to improve service delivery and will also ensure the establishment of the Appeals Committee which will concentrate on appeals made on decisions taken by the South African Civil Aviation Authority. On the outcome of increased contribution of transport to environmental protection, South Africa will continue to play an instrumental role on ICAO Committee for Environmental Protection.
The draft white paper is awaiting approval and will allow for public input on matters which affect aviation environmental conservation. It is therefore our position that the Department will continue to ensure that the impact of aviation related emissions and noise is mitigated.
In closing let us refer to the issue of regulation which remains critical if we are to play our role of setting standards and placing aviation at the centre of our economic growth path. When it comes to regulation our policy must be to maintain an effective balance between ensuring the viability of upgrading our airports and air traffic control infrastructure, on one hand. We must also ensure that our airport charges do not undermine airline viability and therefore passenger numbers on the other hand.
We remain committed to a more stable regulatory environment. In this regard, we have said that we are looking at establishing a full-time Transport Economic Regulator to move away from our current ad hoc approach. In closing the work we do in the Department of Transport is meaningless if it is not partnered and complemented by industry. We call on you to join us as we define our aviation future together.
I THANK YOU