ADDIS ABABA, The Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM), a long-aspired dream to promote continental integration, will be launched on Sunday.

The realization of a single African air transport market is vital for the achievement of the long-term vision of an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa.

Ahmed Shide, Ethiopia's Minister of Transport, said here Wednesday: The Government of Ethiopia confirms its solemn commitment to the unconditional implementation of the Single African Air Transport Market on a reciprocity basis to all the 22 member States which have joined the Single African Air Transport Market."

The continental single market is expected to create an additional 300,000 direct jobs and two million indirect jobs for African countries.

The free air transport will contribute significantly to free market movement and free movement of people, said the Minister.

Ethiopian Airlines Chief Executive Officer Tewolde Gebremariam said the aviation freeway is beneficial to boosting the continent's share of the global air transport sector. He stressed that free air movements in Africa would be able to support all countries in the continent.

The declaration on the establishment of a Single African Air Transport Market was adopted by the African Union (AU) in January 2015. A flagship project of the AU's Agenda 2063, it is an initiative to create a single unified air transport market and the liberalization of civil aviation in Africa, and as an impetus to the continent's economic integration agenda.

The Single Africa Air Transport Market, which has been ratified by 23 countries, is expected to be launched here Sunday.


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