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Fact Sheet: Safe Skies for Africa Initiatives

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Trip to Africa

Office of the Press Secretary
(Dakar, Senegal)

For Immediate ReleaseApril 1, 1998


Safe Skies for Africa Initiatives

The President announced today a "Safe Skies for Africa" initiative. Thegoals of this $1.2 million program - funded by the Departments of State andTransportation -- are to:

(1) increase the number of sub-Saharan African countries that meet ICAO standards for aviation safety;

(2) improve security at 8-12 airports in the region within 3 years;

(3) improve regional air navigation services in Africa by using modern satellite-based navigation aids and modern communications technology.

The initiative will focus on conducting safety assessments and securitysurveys in select countries, and formulate action plans together withAfrica civil aviation authorities to bring aviation safety and securitypractices in Africa up to accepted world standards. In the first year, theDepartment of Transportation will hold four regional conferences withAfrican civil aviation representatives to discuss with them their airportsneeds and how best the U.S. can assist. These conferences will build onthose held last October in Cote d'Ivoire, Ethiopia and Zimbabwe and willthen be followed by security surveys and safety assessments.

Transportation Secretary Slater will visit Africa in the near future tobegin swift implementation of this initiative.

Safe air travel and secure airports are necessary for increasing trade,attracting investment, expanding tourism, and developing a more modernsociety. Nearly half of all world commerce is conducted by air.

"Safe Skies for Africa" is a cornerstone for a larger Africa transportationinitiative that the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) recentlylaunched in support of the Administration's Africa Initiative announced byPresident Clinton in June 1997. DOT's transportation initiative highlightshow essential transportation is to any economy -- large or small, developedor developing.

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Safe Skies for Africa Initiatives

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