African airlines’ performance updates by AFRAA – September 2022


Release date: 12 October 2022

COVID-19: There are improvements in Asia compared to last month. The region is reopening and easing movement restrictions linked to the Covid-19. In Europe however, there are renewed fears of the occurrence of an 8th wave of Covid-19 infections, especially in the UK where a rise in the number of new cases is growing. In Africa, the number of new contaminations remains low. The total case count has reached 619 million and 12.6 million worldwide and in Africa respectively. The global recovery rate is 98.9%. Only 22.3% of Africans have received at least one vaccine compared to the global average of 67.9%.

Airline Performance: This September, traffic and airlines capacity deployed reached 82.52% and 82.1% of the 2019 level respectively. Domestic market share is now at 39.5% capacity and 32.8%% of passengers carried while intra-Africa passengers carried represented 29.5% and corresponding capacity at 24%. Intercontinental traffic this month is 37.6% and capacity 36.5%. African airlines have now resumed operations to 99.2% of routes operated before the pandemic.  Eight African airlines have exceeded the number of international routes they operated before COVID.

AFRAA estimates revenue loss for 2022 to be $3.5 billion, equivalent to 20% of 2019 full year revenues. The projected revenue loss due to COVID for the third quarter of 2022 is approximately $800 million.

Jet fuel price continues the upward trend. Year to date, global average price per barrel is $142. Impact on global airlines fuel bill is estimated at $131.6 billion for the full year.

Regulatory Developments

  • The Indian government has imposed bans on certain single-use plastics (SUP) products through a series of regulations. It appears that airlines and their catering partners will not be able to source these restricted items in India. Members with operations to India may wish to obtain advice on the ban from their legal teams (See the Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016, as amended, and 2021)
  • China has reviewed its data protection and privacy laws.  The Cyberspace Administration of China (“CAC”) has published the final version of its Measures for Security Assessment of Cross-Border Data Transfers related to cross borders transfers of data outside of China.The draft measures released can be found here.
  • Since the late 1970s, airlines with international operations have been required to file a duplicate and documented airline security program prior to, during and post scheduled services between countries. IATA has been working with ICAO to get this redundant requirement modified at the ICAO Annex 17 level to reduce the burden on airlines. ICAO Amendment 18 to Annex 17 is now effective and will become applicable in November 2022. For more details see IATA information paper and ICAO guidance on how best to implement these new requirements.
  • The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on ancillary fees on 26 September. Operators to the US market are encouraged to study review the NPRM and submit comments to the DOT.

About    AFRAA

The African Airlines Association, also known by its acronym AFRAA, is a trade association of airlines from the member states of the African Union (AU). Founded in Accra, Ghana, in April 1968, and headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, AFRAA’s mission is to promote, serve African Airlines and champion Africa’s aviation industry. The Association envisions a sustainable, interconnected and affordable Air Transport industry in Africa where African Airlines become key players and drivers to African economic development. AFRAA membership of 44 airlines cuts across the entire continent and includes all the major intercontinental African operators. The Association members represent over 85% of total international traffic carried by African airlines. Follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.