MEC Alan Winde congratulates Cape Town International Airport for winning air access international award

Cape Town International Airport has won a prestigious international award for the success of the region’s air access initiatives.

The airport was announced as the overall winner of the Routes Africa edition of the Routes 2016 Marketing Awards which took place this week in the Canary Islands.

Alan Winde, Minister of Economic Opportunities, congratulated Deon Cloete, the general manager of Cape Town International Airport and the team.

Increasing air access is a key priority for the Western Cape’s jobs and growth strategy.

“Through Project Khulisa, we have prioritised air access; we know we have to make it easier for visitors to travel to our region. This is why we launched the Cape Town Air Access initiative, which is a partnership between government, Airports Company South Africa, Wesgro and airline industries. Through this initiative, we are seeking to secure additional direct flights to a set of strategic destinations across the world. We know that improving accessibility to our region through more direct flights is crucial to growing jobs,” said Minister Winde.

Minister Winde said improved air access played a role in increasing the number of tourists to the Western Cape.

“Our tourism sector experienced an excellent 2015/16 peak season. The efforts of our air access team helped make this happen. We are achieving growth in international arrivals and departures from several markets.

“There has been an impressive 60% increase in Origin and Destination (O and D) passengers coming through Qatar for the time period, from 34 951 to 55 772 passengers. We can attribute this to our partnership with Qatar Airways through which we have actively promoted our destination. There has been an increase of 53% in O and D passengers from Turkey from 36 348 to 55 714. This growth is linked to the landing of Turkish Airlines flights into Cape Town.”

In a press statement, Routes 2016 Marketing Awards stated that the Cape Town Air Access initiative was achieving success.

“The results of the partnership speak for themselves. Since its inception the team has successfully delivered over 400,000 additional two-way direct seats through route establishment and route expansion up until and including December 2016 – 78 percent of these additional seats have been added in 2016. In total, the Cape Town Air Access team has assisted in establishing five new routes and expanding three existing routes. These comprise new flights from Airlink to Maun, Botswana; Kenya Airways to Nairobi, Kenya and Livingstone, Zambia; British Airways and Thomas Cook Airlines to London Gatwick; and Lufthansa to Frankfurt. Frequency increases have also been introduced by Emirates Airline, Ethiopian Airlines and KLM.”

Following the win, Cape Town International Airport has been shortlisted for the World Routes Awards in Chengdu, China on September 26, 2016. Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, Auckland Airport and Nassau Paradise Island Promotion Board are also shortlisted from previous regional wins at Routes Europe, Routes Asia and Routes Americas.

Source: Government of South Africa.