Johannesburg - African airlines will collectively make no profit this year, the International Air Transport Association (Iata) said on Tuesday.
"This is despite air traffic growing strongly in Africa," the association's vice-president Mike Higgins told reporters in Sandton.
"So we need to understand the challenges facing aviation in the region."
He said air transport, which generated $67.8bn in gross domestic profit (GDP) for Africa, was vital for economic growth.
"With the right policies in place, this footprint will grow substantially in the years to come," he said.
The association forecast that aviation's direct contribution to GDP in Africa would increase by five percent a year over the next 20 years if airlines in Africa were profitable.
"And unfortunately our October forecast showed that once again African airlines will collectively make no profit this year."