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Addis Ababa - Africa will require 1,101 aircraft by 2030 when the continent's air traffic is likely to grow at above world's average, Mr Alan Pardoe, Airbus Head of Marketing Communications has said.

In an interview in Addis Ababa, Pardoe said Airbus latest Global Market Forecast showed that the value of the required aircraft would be 126 billion dollars.

'The required aircraft include 790 single aisles aircraft such as A320 family, 273 twin aisles such as the 350 XWB, the long range A330/A340  and 38 very large aircraft such as the A380'', Pardoe said.

He  said tourism, an expanding middle class, increased urbanisation, business relationships with developing nations and further opportunities from market liberalisation and low cost of air travel would push Africa's average annual passenger growth by 5.7 per cent.

He said the figure was well above the 4.8 per cent world average growth rate and far outstripped more developed markets such as North America and Western Europe.

'Air travel in Africa is predicted to increase by 5.7 per cent annually, because Africa used to rely on river and road transport, but today aviation is essential for development, and will increasingly become the 21st century's answer to connect people in the region with each other and the rest of the world,'' Pardoe said.

He said Airbus had  delivered 534 commercial aircraft and had a booking of 1,1419 aircraft in 2011.

Pardoe said  the company has delivered more than 7,000 aircraft to its customers since it started production  in 1972.

He said the company would continue to target Nigeria's large and growing aviation market as a way of supporting the country's aviation industry.

Arik airline is the only Airbus customer in Nigeria. (NAN)