Aviation This Week – Part 3
Third in the series of ‘Aviation This Week’, news summaries of events relevant to Ghana’s aviation space for today comprises of industry happenings from November 23- 28, 2020.
- UNICEF Engages Global Airlines and Shipping Lines Ahead of COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution
UNICEF, the world’s largest single vaccine buyer has held a meeting with some 350 logistic partners comprising of major global airlines and shipping lines to step up their game in the projected delivery of some 2 billion COVID-19 vaccines to 92 low and middle income countries as and when a vaccine is made available. The meeting also sought to discuss the capacity and safety requirements needed for such freight operations.
- Will COVID-19 Vaccination Become a Requirement for International Travels?
As part of measures to return the aviation industry to pre-COVID-19 era, some global airlines and industry players are advocating for the introduction of COVID-19 vaccination as one of the prerequisite for international travels. Considering how far the development of a COVID-19 vaccine has come, it is the hope of airlines like Qantas, Korean Air and other Asia and Pacific countries that vaccination becomes a requirement for persons who intend to embark on international travels. Some stakeholders hope to see the industry bounce back quickly to pre-COVID era, should a vaccine be made available going into 2021.
- Committee Inaugurated to Resolve GCAA Union Workers Land Dispute
Following the recent agitations by union workers of the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) over encroachment on lands reserved for aviation operations, the Chief of Staff, Madam Frema Opare has inaugurated a technical committee to look into the issues and arrive at resolution to bring an end to the persistent misunderstandings between the workers, La Traditional Authorities and some property developers.
Members of the committee were drawn from the Transport Ministry, Air Force, National Security, Aviation Ministry, among other state institutions.
- GCAA Inaugurates RPAS Committee
The Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) has inaugurated a 33-member committee to oversee the activities of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) in Ghana's airspace. The move follows the increase usage of RPAS, commonly referred to as drones in the country. The event formed part of GCAA’s effort to strengthen the country's airspace and deepen collaboration with stakeholders in the aviation industry.
- IATA Calls for Testing Rather Than Quarantine for International Travelers
The International Air Transport Association, after its 76th Annual General Meeting is proposing to governments across the globe particularly those with closed air borders and quarantine measures to rather replace such practices with the prioritization of COVID-19 test for international travelers as a means to stimulate demand for air travel. Also, at the same meeting, IATA called for the prioritization of health workers, aviation staff, vulnerable groups and international travelers for COVID-19 vaccination once a vaccine is deemed safe for usage.
- Cape Coast Airport Feasibility Studies Completed
Reports have it that, feasibility studies for the construction of the Cape Coast Airport in Ankaful has been completed. This comes after the Aviation Minister together with the Tourism Minister and officials from the Ghana Airports Company Limited and Ghana Civil Aviation Authority engaged the traditional authorities in the area this week. The construction of the airport and other ancillary facilities is expected to cost between US$50million and US$60million.
- Emirates Introduces Multi-Risk Insurance, free complimentary hotel stay
On top of its COVID-19 cover for travelers, Emirates has introduced first of its kind, a multi-risk insurance to all customers traveling via its hub, Dubai from December 1, 2020. According to Emirates, any flight number beginning with 176 will see passengers enjoy among others, a cover on emergency medical expenses and evacuation as well as trip cancellation of up to US$7,500 due to extension of school reopen date beyond departure date due to COVID-19 if traveler is a teacher, student or an employee in a primary or secondary school.
Emirates has also introduced a complimentary hotel stay to its customers transiting via its hub. The offer will be available from December 1, 2020 and open to passengers with a minimum transit time of over 10 hours.
- Demand for international flights picking up steadily in Ghana
Following the coronavirus setback that hit the aviation industry, reports by local aviation monitors have shown that international airlines flying in and out of the Kotoka International Airport seem to record an increase in Passenger Load Factor (PFL). At present, the PFL for Emirates, Ethiopian and other competing international airlines in the country is between 50% and 70%.
BY: Mark Ofosu || Aviation Geek || [email protected]