IATA welcomes Somalia airspace upgrade to ‘Class A’

Joy Onuorah
Joy Onuorah

The International Air Transport Association has commended Somalia for upgrading of its airspace and the surrounding area to ‘Class A’.

This comes after air traffic control services in the African country resumed operations after a 30-year interruption on January 26, 2023.

Approximately 300 airlines, or 83% of worldwide aviation traffic, are represented by IATA.

The Mogadishu Flight Information Region, which includes Somalia, is home to some of the busiest flight routes in the area, connecting the Indian subcontinent and Indian Ocean islands with Western Europe, the Middle East, and the African subcontinent south of Ethiopia.

It encircles the Horn of Africa’s landmass and reaches the Indian Ocean.

The reclassification of the Mogadishu FIR as “Class A” airspace will greatly increase safety and efficiency in the region, according to IATA’s Regional Vice President for the Middle East and Africa, Kamil Al-Awadhi.

Meanwhile, the Somalia Airspace Special Coordination Team, which consists of the Somali CAA, IATA, the International Civil Aviation Organization, nearby FIRs, and airlines, worked cooperatively to achieve this.

The construction and commissioning of contemporary radio navigation and other technological infrastructure have made it possible to reclassify the airspace and resume operational air traffic control in the Mogadishu FIR.

It comes after a successful experiment that got under way in May.

Al-Awadhi added, “The upgrade of air traffic management and improved navigation and communication infrastructure will enhance situational awareness along an increasingly busy air corridor and its intersections with routes linking many of the world’s regions.”

Air traffic control, which is also in charge of preserving the horizontal and vertical separation between aircraft, is required to give clearance for every flight taking place in Class A airspace.

The airspace above the base altitude of roughly 24,500 feet above mean sea level is known as Class A airspace in the Mogadishu FIR.

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