The Commercial Aviation Association of Southern Africa (CAASA) today launched its Aviation Activity Index (CAAI), a composite index of aviation activity in South Africa
CAASA said 25 different indicators were selected for inclusion in the index, covering the value of imports of helicopters, the value of imports of aeroplanes (of a mass less than 15 tons), the physical quantity of imported aircraft, the value of imports of aircraft spares, the value of exports of aircraft, air traffic movements at six ACSA airports and air traffic movements at seven key non-ACSA airports.
“The overall index shows that commercial aviation activity in South Africa is alive and well and outperforming most other sectors of the economy by a considerable margin. On the basis of a 3-month moving average, the CAAI increased by more than 55% between the first quarter of 2014 and the second quarter of 2016. In comparison, the country’s GDP (weighted according to the quantity/nominal value ratio of the CAAI) only increased by 9.8% over this period,” CAASA said.
The Association noted that the main driver behind the performance of the CAAI since 2014 has been the value of exports of aircraft, reaching a record high of almost R1.3 billion in the first quarter of 2016. During the first six months of 2016, the value of aircraft exports was 166% higher than during the first six months of 2014, according to CAAI figures.
The values of imports of aircraft and aircraft spares have also increased significantly over the past two-and-a-half years, namely by 88% and 60%, respectively. According to the SA Revenue Service, the average quarterly value of imports of aircraft is over R400 million for 2016 (slightly less than 2015), while the value of aircraft spares imports is over R1 billion this year, compared to less than R850 million in an average quarter in 2015.
Since 2014, CAASA said the growth in air traffic movements at airports managed by the Airports Company of South Africa (ACSA) has been muted, but nevertheless positive. The group index for this indicator increased by a modest 4.8% over this period. In contrast, growth in air traffic movements at key non-ACSA airports has been significantly stronger, namely 19% (since 2014).
CAASA CEO Leon Dillman said at the launch of the index at the Africa Aerospace and Defence exhibition outside Pretoria that there is huge demand for aviation services in South Africa, with the South African aviation industry looking to enlarge its footprint in Africa.
Economist Dr Roelof Botha, who assisted with the compilation of the index, said that the South African aviation industry is playing an important role in the development of aviation in Africa and contributes to the development of the local economy.