Satellite navigation: New office for Africa-Europe cooperation

The SAFIR (Satellite navigation services for African Region) project has opened the EGNOS-Africa Joint Programme Office (JPO). EGNOS is the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service.

The EGNOS-Africa Joint Programme Office (JPO) is created as a Pan-African “implementing instrument” to coordinate GNSS/EGNOS introduction in Sub-Saharan Africa for all types of applications with a particular attention given to aviation as main driver. JPO has been created within the EU-Africa Common Strategy through ACP/EC framework Programme ‘’Support to the Air Transport and Satellite services applications in Africa’’ as an outcome of the SAFIR Project.

The website reported: "The ceremony took place in Dakar on March 3 in the presence of Matthias Petschke, director of the EU satellite navigation programmes, Karolina Stasiak from the EU delegation in Sénégal and Amadou Ousmane Guittèye, director general of ASECNA." High ranking officials from the International Civil Aviation Organisation, the African Civil Aviation Commission, the Agence Nationale de l’Aviation Civile et de la Météorologie and the Aéroports du Sénégab also attended the event.

Petschke said: “Satellite navigation can bring huge societal benefits, be it in transport, in agriculture or land management. Satellite based augmentation systems in particular, like EGNOS, can bring enormous social and economic benefits. I attach therefore great importance to the setting up of the EGNOS Africa Joint Programme Office and am particularly pleased to see this team of African experts who have extensive experience and knowledge to support the development of an African satellite based augmentation system.”