Africa’s Airlines: 15% Projected Passenger Traffic Growth in 2024

Estimated 26% rise in operating revenue, reaching US$1.74 Bn in March 2024.


The African aviation industry is experiencing a robust recovery in 2024, according to the latest report from the African Airlines Association (AFRAA).

Despite ongoing post-pandemic hurdles, the sector witnessed a resurgence in passenger traffic, driven by increased capacity and strong demand.

African Airlines’ Performance May 2024

  • Capacity Growth: Available seats in Africa rose by 6% year-over-year in May 2024, reaching 15.9 million, fueled by new routes and more frequent flights.
  • Passenger Traffic Up: AFRAA projects a 15% increase in passenger traffic for African carriers in 2024 compared to 2023.
  • Strong Intra-Africa Connectivity: Intra-regional connectivity witnessed a surge, with major hubs like Addis Ababa, Nairobi, Abidjan, and Lome experiencing significant growth.
  • Intercontinental routes, Africa accounts for only 35.4% of capacity, with non-African operators holding the majority share at 64.6%.
  • Revenue Rise: African airlines are benefiting from the traffic surge, with operating revenue in March 2024 estimated at US$1.74 billion, a 26% increase from the previous year ( US$1.39 Bn in March 2023).

Challenges Remain

  • Jet Fuel Prices: The global price of Jet A1 fuel remains volatile, impacting airline profitability.
  • Excessive Taxes: NAHCO, the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company, raised concerns about high airline taxes in Nigeria, making airports less competitive.
  • VAT on Aviation Supplies: Kenya’s proposed Finance Bill 2024, which includes VAT on aviation equipment and supplies, is seen as a deviation from global best practices.
  • Kenya Prioritizes Safety: The Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) is working on validating draft aviation regulations to enhance safety and efficiency. However, the proposed VAT on aviation equipment and supplies is a point of contention.

Sustainability Efforts

  • Egypt’s Green Push: The Egyptian Petrochemicals Holding Company plans to launch the country’s first sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) production facility by 2025.