Decision relating to the implementation of the Yamoussoukro declaration concerning the liberalisation of access to air transport markets in Africa
Annex 6 to the Yamoussoukro Decision: Regulations on the Protection of Consumers of Air Transport Services
- Commenced in full on 17 March 2017
- [This is the version of this document at 17 March 2017.]
Article 1 – CitationThese Regulations shall be cited as "Regulation on Protection of Consumers, provision of an African Air Transport Fund and liability of service providers in passenger air transport services".
Article 2 – DefinitionsFor the purposes of this Regulation, the following expressions shall mean:"Airport" means any area of land especially adapted for the landing, taking-off and manoeuvres of aircraft, including the ancillary installations which these operations may involve for the requirements of aircraft traffic and services including the installations needed to assist commercial air services."Airlines", unless the context otherwise requires include eligible airlines, noneligible African Airlines, and non African airlines as defined in these Regulation;"Consumer" means the person who takes or agrees to take the package (‘the principal contractor’), or any person on whose behalf the principal contractor agrees to purchase the package (‘the other beneficiaries’) or any person to whom the principal contractor or any of the other beneficiaries transfers the package (‘the transferee’);"Consumer Protection Agency " means the institution or organisation authorised by this Regulation to regulate consumer protection under the Yamoussoukro Decision, by the regional economic communities or by state parties;"Eligible airline" mean any airline licensed duly licensed by a State Party and Certificated as an eligible airline to operate under the terms of the Yamoussoukro Decision and actually operating the flight in question under these regulations."Ground handling" means the services provided to airlines at airports and comprise the following sub-categories;"Passenger handling" comprises any kind of information and assistance including those provided to arriving, departing, transfer or transit passengers, including checking tickets and travel documents, registering baggage and carrying it to the sorting area;"Baggage handling" comprises handling baggage in the sorting area, sorting it, preparing it for departure, loading it on to and unloading it from the devices designed to move it from the aircraft to the sorting area and vice versa, as well as transporting baggage from the sorting area to the reclaim area;"Freight handling" comprises physical handling of export, transfer and import freight, handling of related documents, customs procedures and implementation of any security procedure agreed between the parties or required by the circumstances;"Mail handling" includes physical handling of incoming and outgoing mail, handling of related documents and implementation of any security procedure agreed between the parties or required by the circumstances;"Ramp handling" comprises marshalling the aircraft on the ground at arrival and departure; assistance to aircraft packing and provision of suitable devices; communication between the aircraft and the air-side supplier of services; the loading and unloading of the aircraft, including the provision and operation of suitable means, as well as the transport of crew and passengers between the aircraft and the terminal, and baggage transport between the aircraft and the terminal; the provision and operation of appropriate units for engine starting; the moving of the aircraft at arrival and departure, as well as the provision and operation of suitable devices and the transport, loading on to and unloading from the aircraft of food and beverages;"Aircraft services" comprise the external and internal cleaning of the aircraft, and the toilet and water services; the rearrangement of the cabin with suitable cabin equipment, the storage of this equipment;"Fuel and oil handling" comprises the organization and execution of fuelling and refuelling operations, including the storage of fuel, also if adjacent to the airport, and the control of the quality and quantity of fuel deliveries; the replenishing of oil and other fluids;"Aircraft maintenance" comprises routine services performed before flight; non-routine services requested by the airline; the provision and administration of spare parts and suitable equipment; the request for or reservation of a suitable parking and/or hangar space;"Flight operations and crew administration" comprise the preparation of the flight at the departure airport or at any other point; in-flight assistance, including re-dispatching if needed; post-flight activities; crew administration;"Surface transport" comprises the organization and execution of crew, passenger, baggage, freight and mail transport between different terminals of the same airport, but excluding the same transport between the aircraft and any other point within the perimeter of the same airport and any special transport requested by the airline;"Licence" means a valid licence granted by the Civil Aviation Authority or its equivalent under valid Regulations of States Parties to an airline, a travel agent, a tour operator;"Non-eligible African airline" means any airline duly licensed by a State Party and authorised to operate international routes but has not been certificated as an eligible airline to operate under the terms of the Yamoussoukro Decision and actually operating the flight in question under these regulations;"Non-African airline" means an airline licensed by a third party state and authorised by a state party to lift and put down passengers, cargo and mail in the territory of one or more state parties and actually operating the flight in question under these regulations;"State Party" shall include each African State signatory to the Abuja Treaty and such other African country which, though not a party to the said Treaty, has declared in writing its intention to be bound by the Yamoussoukro Decision.
Article 3 – Scope of application of the Regulations
Article 4 – Objectives and principlesThe objective of these Regulations is to protect the consumer of air transport services provided in the territories of state parties of the Yamoussoukro Decision from suffering unfair treatment in the provision of services and lack of or inadequate information on services provided leading to a poor treatment.
Part one – Consumer losses
Article 5 – Interruption of services
Part two – Prohibitions
Article 6 – Prohibitions: Unfair and deceptive practices
Article 7 – Obligations of service providersThis section lays down general and specific obligations of service providers providing services directly to the passenger and includes airlines, tour operators, consolidator, travel agents, airport operators, Air Navigation Services Providers, Caterers and ground handling agencies whether operating as agents of one provider or not.
Part three – Obligations on service providers
Article 8 – Maintaining adequate third party insurance cover
Article 9 – Non-discrimination
Article 10 – Means of communication
Article 11 – Information to the consumer
Article 12 – Complaints proceduresEvery service provider shall establish a consumer relations desk and particularly at every airport it operates and shall appoint an officer to manage the desk for the purpose of receiving, resolving and channeling complaints to their Head offices, as well as liaising with the Civil Aviation Authority of the state party where necessary.
Article 13 – Filing of advanced flight and passenger information
Article 14 – Compliance with Warsaw Liability RegimesAirlines shall strictly comply with compensation requirements under the Warsaw Liability as applicable to each passenger and shall not impose any onerous terms and conditions on the passenger or otherwise apply policies and procedures or make any such demands of the consumers as is calculated or may be interpreted as limiting or having the effect of limiting its relevant liabilities
Article 15 – Denied boarding
Article 16 – DelayWhen an airline reasonably expects a flight to be delayed beyond its scheduled time of departure:
Article 17 – Cancellation of flight
Article 18 – Downgrading
Article 19 – Travel agents and package tour operatorsSubject to the general obligations in this Part of the Regulations, where applicable the travel agent and or tour operator, in a contract that involves air travel provided by an airline as well as other services including but not limited to accommodation and other tourist services, shall:
Article 20 – Airport operatorsSubject to the general obligations in this Part of the Regulations, Passengers and all other persons attending the airport in any capacity excluding those waving off, dropping of, picking up or welcoming passengers, shall, subject to national security and safety legislation, be entitled to:
Part four – Rights of the consumer
Article 21 – Right to reimbursement
Article 22 – Right to be re-routedWhere passengers are offered the right of re-routing, passengers shall have the choice of:reimbursement within seven days of the full cost of the ticket at the price at which it was bought, for the part or parts of the journey not made, and for the part or parts already made if the flight is no longer serving any purpose in relation to the passenger's original travel plan, together with, when relevant,a return flight to the first point of departure, at the earliest opportunity and accommodation;re-routing, under comparable transport conditions, to their final destination at the earliest opportunity and accommodation; or:
Article 23 – Right to compensation
Part five – Administration
Article 24 – Administrative procedures
Article 25 – Investigation
Article 26 – Determination of complaints
Article 27 – Penalty
Part six – Miscellaneous
Article 28 – Duty of care
Article 29 – Service providers right of redressIn cases where an airline pays compensation or meets the other obligations incumbent on it under this Regulation, no provision of this Regulation may be interpreted as restricting its right to seek compensation from any service provider, including third parties, in accordance with the law applicable in the state party. In particular, this Regulation shall in no way restrict the airline’s right to seek reimbursement from a travel agent, ground handling company, airport operator, air navigation service provider, tour operator or another person with whom the operating air carrier has a contract. Similarly, no provision of this Regulation may be interpreted as restricting the right of a travel agent or tour operator or a third party, other than a passenger, with whom an airline has a contract, to seek reimbursement or compensation from the airline in accordance with applicable laws.
Article 30 – Review by the Executing AgencyWithin 2 years of entry into force of this Regulation, the Executing Agency shall report to the concerned Ministerial Organ of the African Union on the operation and the results of this Regulation. The report shall be accompanied where necessary by legislative proposals.
Article 31 – Entry into forceThis Regulation shall enter into force immediately following its endorsement by the Assembly of Heads of State and Government.
History of this document
17 March 2017 this version