Mr Aaron Munetsi, Regional General Manager, Africa and Middle East, South African Airways (SAA), has attributed the failure of some airlines in Africa to lack of operational cash.
Munetsi said this in an interview with reporters on Friday in Abuja.
He explained that most the failed airlines suffered from lack of operational modules that encourage them to make money.
He advocated that there should be consolidation of aviation assets available to every country to enable them develop the industry in order to encourage investors to come in.
“Airlines do not fail because they don’t have aircraft, there are aircraft all over the world but there are airlines that have failed because of one thing and only one reason; they ran out of cash.
“As long as the operating module does not allow you to have operating cash, do not venture into that business because you are going to fail.
“I think what need to be done is that there should be a consolidation of aviation assets that available to the country.
“Then you take them and say, from an infrastructure point of view, the Federal Government must benefit. Then from the regional provincial point of view, each state must be able to develop its own and then it can benefit from that.’’
According to Munetsi, there are two major challenges facing the aviation industry in Africa of which the first is perception and the second is lack of priority on the part of policy makers.
He said that the perception that there were challenges in African aviation industry without developing strategic plans to tackle them was partly responsible for nature of the industry in the continent.
Munetsi said that the challenges facing African aviation industry were not different from any other regions in the world, adding that those developed regions were at some point faced with similar challenges.
According to him, the countries that have succeeded in putting their aviation industry on track are able to develop strategies, put them into play and stay on course.
The second challenge according to him, is the inability of the policy makers in Africa to prioritise opportunities, harness them with strategic execution of what they have planned.
“I think there are two challenges facing the aviation industry in Africa; the first one is perception, there is a lot of perception out there that there are challenges in African aviation industry.
“We are not different from any other regions in the world. If you look at the western world, they were also at the stage where we are today.
“What they were able to do which I think was a biggest opportunity was that they were able to gather their minds and their thoughts with strategic plans and then they put it into play and execute it.
“They were able to come up with development plans and they were able to stay the course.’’