8 July 2011
South Africa is working to address the challenges facing its aviation industry, including reviewing the funding models for Airports Company SA and the Air Traffic and Navigation Services, and establishing a full-time regulator for the sector.
Department of Transport director-general George Mahlalela met with stakeholders from the aviation industry in Pretoria this week to present the proposed roadmap, as well as to receive input from the industry.
Briefing reporters after the meeting, Mahlalela said the Department of Transport had developed a “proposed roadmap to address shortcomings in the current economic regulatory framework” of regulated entities.
“This exercise has been necessitated by different interpretations of both the Airports Company South Africa (Acsa) and the Air Traffic and Navigation Services (ATNS) Acts,” Mahlalela said.
“Over the next six months, we will be involved in an intensive and accelerated programme addressing all the existing gaps in the aviation industry.”
According to Mahlalela, the new roadmap provides for the formulation and promulgation of regulations to support the purposes and intentions of the Acts.
He said the exercise would be carried out in consultation with Acsa, ATNS and other aviation industry stakeholders.
Reviewing funding models
Mahlalela said the roadmap also provided for the review of the funding model for all regulated entities. The process is expected to be completed by the end of December this year.
“It is clear that broader review of the economic regulatory framework within the transport industry, including the aviation sector, is necessary to enable more predictable, transparent and balanced economic regulatory frameworks going forward.
“This will play a critical role in the facilitation of the implementation of the integrated transport master plan.”
Mahlalela said they remained committed to a more stable, predictable and transparent economic regulatory environment conducive to continued strong growth of the aviation sector.
“In this regard, we are working towards establishing a full-time Transport Economic Regulator to assist us to move away from an ad hoc approach. This will allow for improved planning, coordination and efficiency.”