FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 31 May 2005 (Tokyo) - At its 61st Annual General Meeting and World Air Transport Summit in Tokyo, Giovanni Bisignani, Director General and CEO of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced two major initiatives on safety with specific reference to Africa.

"Despite our great record on safety, the regional differences that remain are not acceptable. We need to concentrate on the areas of greatest need with the appropriate tools. The IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) programme—the global standard for airline safety management—is the tool at the core of our efforts. And Africa is the region that needs help the most," said Bisignani.

Partnership for Safety
"Airlines in developing nations need assistance to prepare for the IOSA audit programme. I am pleased to announce that IATA is investing US$2 million in the IATA Partnership for Safety (IPFS) to achieve this," said Bisignani.

The IPFS will promote IOSA standards among airlines and governments with training and analysis. For airlines, gap analysis will provide a baseline assessment of operational capabilities that will lead to the identification of measures needed to reach the IOSA standard and training / awareness programmes will prepare airline managements for the audit process. Governments will also benefit from the training, which will show how IOSA can provide significant complementary benefit to their own safety oversight programmes.

"The programme will commence with Africa and will be rolled around the globe. Step one of the programme will be entirely funded by IATA. Once needs are identified, IATA will work with global development institutions, and going forward we will build partnerships to provide the funds needed to bring all developing world airlines to IOSA standards," said Bisignani.

"Skill development is critical in Africa. To complement the efforts of the International Airline Training Fund it is a pleasure to announce a partnership focused specifically on Africa with one of our industry's great partners, CFM International," said Bisignani. CFM International contributed US$100,000 to kick-start a fund to support operational training for Africa's airline industry.

"We have recognized the need for partnerships to support the future of aviation in Africa. This is important not only for the airlines, but as a mechanism for the continent's development. We are extremely happy to be responding to industry needs through the industry's global Association, IATA," said Pierre Fabre, President of CFM International.

"Safety is priority number one. While 2004 was our safest year; we are committed to doing even better—a 25% improvement in the accident rate between 2004 and 2006. The IPFS and our initiative with CFM are two concrete examples of how we are going to make this happen," said Giovanni Bisignani.


Editor's Notes:

About IOSA:

  • IOSA was launched in 2003 as the only global standard for airline operational safety management.
  • It is an integral part of IATA's commitment to reduce the global accident rate by 25% between 2004 and 2006.
  • To date 75 IOSA audits have been completed and 41 carriers are on the IOSA registry. The IOSA registry is publicly available here.
  • By the end of 2005 some 140 airlines are expected to be in the IOSA process - including over 100 IATA members.
  • The IOSA Standards Manual on which the audit is based is available free-of-charge to any airline (member or non-member) from the IOSA website.