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Cape Town Air Access to punt direct routes to Cape Town at Routes Americas 2019

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Date: 13 February 2019

North America was identified as  one of the largest unserved markets, with the USA ranked as the 3rd largest market for inbound passengers to Cape Town International Airport in 2017. OAG Data cited 119 817  inbound passengers  between  January to November 2018, this is an increase of 5% compared to that of the same period in 2017. Confirming the need for a direct connection between North  America and the Mother City, the facilitation of a direct route remains a top  priority for the Cape Town Air Access Project.


Similarly, South America presents  many untapped opportunities, with Brazil showing a marked increase of 51% for inbound  passengers in 2017, compared to that of 2016. Between January to November 2018, 18 090 inbound passengers were recorded into Cape Town International Airport, showing an increase of 7% compared to that of the same period in 2017.


“The  event gives us the rare opportunity to meet with key aviation professionals in  the market, as well as providing an additional platform to showcase our route  development case for Cape Town and the Western Cape,” said Air Access Project  Manager, Paul van den Brink.


While North America is earmarked as a priority market for the upcoming year, the Air  Access Project will also be focusing on the facilitation of new routes to North  and West Africa.


Currently  the largest unserved market in Africa is Lagos in Nigeria, with over 27 000  two-way passengers recorded between January and November 2018, showing an  increase of 15% compared to that of 2017.


“With Cape Town International claiming the accolade of  best Airport in Africa for three consecutive years, we see an opportunity to  position Cape Town as North America’s gateway to the rest of the African continent.  Since CTAA’s inception in 2015, 8 new African destinations have been added to  Cape Town International’s growing network including: Addis Ababa, Harare,  Kigali, Livingstone, Luanda, Maun, Nairobi and Victoria Fall. This resulted in  400 000 two-way seats to the CPT African Network,” said Wesgro CEO Tim  Harris.


Harris added, “A direct route with North America presents opportunities for increased tourism,  trade and investment with the Western Cape, as well as opportunities for  increased cargo which saw over a 50% increase in 2017, thanks to the efforts of the CTAA  project initiative.”


Minister of Economic Opportunities, Beverly Schäfer, said: “Air  Access has been tremendously successful in opening up Cape Town to the rest of  the world and this track record of excellence, coupled with the fact that Cape  Town International is the premier airport in Africa, will stand the team in  good stead as they head to Routes America. We now have our eye firmly on  developing a direct route between Cape Town and the USA, which will help us to  further grow tourism and trade relations and create new opportunities for  growth and jobs.”


"Connecting Cape Town to the rest of the world is part  of our goal of growing tourism and the associated job  creation benefits for our communities. North America is one of the biggest  markets and creating a direct route will contribute significantly to tourism  growth in Cape Town. We have a world-class city and and an award-winning  airport in Cape Town International Airport. We want to promote Cape Town  and continue to ensure that it remains one of the top  global destinations for tourism and investment," said Executive Mayor, Dan Plato.


Mayoral Committee  Member for Economic Opportunities and Asset  Management, Alderman James  Vos, concluded: “The City of Cape Town is proud to be involved with Air Access as the City has provided funding towards this initiative, and with the recent approval of the adjustment budget, I have motivated for additional funding towards this project, given its significance to land more flights that will translate into more economic opportunities for our city meaning more jobs for locals.  This project certainly unlocks the full potential of our aviation economy, and importantly connects our city with many more countries resulting in additional trade and investment opportunities.”

Cape Town Air Access is a  partnership between the City of Cape Town, Western Cape Government, Wesgro,  Cape Town Tourism, South African Tourism, Airports Company South Africa and  private sector partners. To  date, the CTAA initiative has helped land 8 new international airlines, 13 new  direct routes and 18 route expansions, resulting in more than 1.5 million  two-way seats being added into Cape Town International boosting the local economy  by R6 billion.

See more?  International passenger numbers at Cape Town International grow by 9,6% in 2018


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