- 09 Dec 2021
- Felipe Reisch
- AvBuyer Africa Articles
How is the private aviation market in North Africa set to change in 2022? Felipe Reisch asked Rebecca Johnson, President for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) for JetHQ, and Shukri Khalifa, MixJet’s Executive Vice President for their insights…Back to Articles
Northern Africa – and specifically Egypt and Morocco – is growing as a market for private aviation. Private jet providers are seeing evidence for this from both new buyers, and existing owners who are looking to sell and upgrade on their current aircraft, which as a result strengthens the overall ecosystem.
In both cases the North Africa region is witnessing newer aircraft coming in, with older airplanes leaving the region for North America (for example), to satisfy inventory demand there.
As an example, operators of older models – such as Gulfstream G200s – are acquiring newer or bigger jets after a decade flying their current planes. Their G200s have a lot of value in the United States, where the inventory is not available to meet the demand being created by people entering the private aviation space for the first time. So it’s a win-win for sellers in Northern Africa and buyers in North America.
There may be a perception that the Africa market is driven by older aircraft, but that’s not what Rebecca Johnson, President, EMEA for JetHQ, a global aircraft acquisitions and transactions company, is seeing.
“Some of the owners are experienced in private aviation and are looking for the newest aircraft available, and others, spurred by big developers and booming construction projects are getting into the market for the first time, and are looking for the same high-end jets one might [more commonly] see out of the Middle East or North America.
“This is a sophisticated market now,” Johnson says.
A shift in ownership between regions within Africa is also a noticeable trend right now. Traditionally a lot of these users would travel from Northern Africa to Southern Africa for business, and certainly South Africa was a large Business Aviation market.
“In the past year, more and more owners in the south are looking to divest themselves of aircraft,” Johnson reveals. “That inventory is quickly getting picked up by buyers in North or West Africa.”
Mid-Size Jets: King of the Skies?
Private aviation continues to be one of the best ways for business leaders, VIPs, and government officials to overcome pandemic-related constraints.
The last two years have shown how valuable it is to retain control over one’s own travel and movement, and this has driven many economic opportunities that the region wouldn’t otherwise have had, with scheduled airlines limiting – or even canceling – routes.
Owners continue to need good ways to get across the region, and access the Middle East or Europe. Mid-size Jets appear to be the most common tool currently. In contrast, Johnson shares, “the need for long-range jets to East Asia, Australia or New Zealand has dropped off.
“Some of that is pandemic related, of course, but also supply chain issues have made necessary travel more regional than global.”
Cessna Citation XLS/XLS+ or Sovereign/Sovereign+, and Gulfstream G280 jets are very popular right now, according to Johnson. The shift has moved towards a range of aircraft that might be nimbler for users, while still keeping the important features, she adds.
2021 BizAv Trends & 2022 Projections
Shukri Khalifa, Executive Vice President at a global private aviation services provider MixJet, reveals 2021 brought an impressive 37% increase in private jet flights [for his company]. “After the pandemic, and due to long and difficult safety measures in airports, more businessmen and wealthy individuals have opted to charter a private jet rather than spend their money on business class and first class airline flights.
“This flood of new customers has definitely put pressure on the private jet market and created a shortage in supply, which I believe would be compensated by new orders by the big players.”
“If an aircraft was being listed for sale in 2021, it probably already had an offer on it,” Johnson expects. “This trend should continue in 2022. It’s absolutely a seller’s market, so owners can expect to receive maximum value for an asset which they are looking to upgrade on.
“Similarly, buyers are in a better position if they have an experienced broker with a large network of global connections looking out for them.”
According to Johnson, “Africa, throughout the continent, has many opportunities for aviation. There is a wealth of business and governmental needs for aircraft, and the old perceptions don’t match the reality on the ground.
“Some brokerage firms have ignored the area because of perceived difficulties in completing transactions. We have worked with local partners to find solutions for clients’ aviation needs. Africa has a robust future with more opportunities appearing all the time,” she concludes.
As private aircraft owners in Northern Africa with business ties to Europe and the Middle East seek to improve their assets by acquiring newer aircraft, the industry in the region should benefit with increased competitiveness, reach, and demand.
Northern Africa’s position in the continent’s BizAv realm is beginning to swiftly change, led by Morocco and Egypt. The region would appear to be positioning itself among the top markets in the continent, alongside South Africa, Nigeria, and Kenya, regarding type of aircraft and number of movements.
That potential could be even greater, though, thanks to the aforementioned proximity and business relations with Europe and the Middle East.
More information from http://jethq.com or www.mixjet.aero
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