Airport Cities conference gives impetus to African Century of Economic Development

Posted On Thursday, 25 April 2013 17:54 Published by Commercial Property News
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The Department of Transport embraces the airport cities and aerotropolis concepts as a way to use the aviation infrastructure to meet other social and economic goals of the country

Airport Cities Conference Deputy MinisterThe hosting of the first ever Airport Cities World Conference and Exhibition (ACE) on African soil by the City of Ekurhuleni is a clear indication that this is the century for the African continent and it is imperative that there should be special focus on the kind of airport infrastructure that will benefit the country.

"The Department of Transport embraces the airport cities and aerotropolis concepts as a way to use the aviation infrastructure to meet other social and economic goals of the country. We must commend the City of Ekurhuleni for leading the country as Africa's first Aerotropolis," Deputy Minister of Transport, Sindisiwe Chikunga, said this morning when opening day one of the conference.

Speaking at the ACE conference at Emperors Palace today, the Deputy Minister called for the refocusing of the country's attention to the kind of airport infrastructure needed to address the current and long term needs of the country.

In a clear gesture of commitment to support Ekurhuleni's Aerotropolis ideas, Chikunga said government has prioritised the development of airports as some of the key economic drivers in the country.

She disclosed that the Transport Department is working towards the development of the National Airport Development Plan that will cater for the future needs of airports in the country, saying the plan will achieve sufficient capacity to handle demand, financial and economic viability as well as meeting the social and economic goals of the country.

"Our long term goal is to develop airport infrastructure that is a catalyst to facilitate economic growth, job creation and poverty eradication," she said.

The development of airports, she said, should be integrated into all national, provincial and local economic and spatial development initiatives.

"Such policy commitment should be supported by tangible plans and scientific evidence, and should be monitored to ensure we do not miss our targets," she said.

Last modified on Monday, 20 May 2013 10:48

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