28 February 2014

The political economy of why flights are so expensive in Africa

Andrea Goldstein of the OECD emails an old but very interesting paper (ungated here) in response to my post on the AfDB blog about African Airlines.

He makes two points and offers two recommendations

First, in the experience of OECD countries, "liberalisation delivers in terms of quantity, quality, and cost of air transport."

Second, what allowed liberalisation to take place was a political dynamic, driven by interest groups (trade associations and organised consumers) pushing for reform.

So what can or should the OECD do to support policy reform?

One, establish an international authority capable of enforcing safety standards (the ICAO is an obvious candidate).

Two, aid could be used to accelerate the restructuring and privatisation of African airlines.

Neither of these address the issue of opening the skies, which is down to African governments, and African consumers and trade groups to lobby for.

1 comment:

Post a Comment