CAPA-Qatar Aviation Aeropolitical Summit, 5-6 February 2020, Doha

Featured Analysis

In Feb-2019 CAPA - Centre for Aviation, in partnership with Qatar Airways, held the inaugural CAPA Qatar Aviation Aeropolitical and Regulatory Summit in Doha. The memorable and resoundingly successful summit concluded with the release of the Doha Declaration 2019, which called for a serious global review of the aviation regulatory framework established in 1944 and a political recommitment to the principles of liberalisation.

On 05/06-Feb-2020 the second CAPA Qatar Aviation Aeropolitical and Regulatory Summit will be held in Doha, and senior figures from the aviation and travel industry, regulatory authorities, government officials and academics will be in attendance to offer their perspectives on a range of issues and recent developments in aviation regulation.

Guest speakers include IAG, CEO, Willie Walsh; Henrik Hololei, European Commission, Director General for Mobility and Transport; RwandAir, CEO, Yvonne Manzi Makolo; Kamil Al-Awadhi, CEO, Kuwait Airways; Royal Jordanian, CEO, Stefan Pichler; Brian Hedberg, Director International Office of Aviation, US Department of Transportation; Abdul Wahab Teffaha, Secretary General, AACO; Vuwani Ndwamato, Director of Air Transport, South African Department of Transport; Abderahmane Berthé, Secretary General, African Airlines Association; and many others.

  • The second CAPA Qatar Aviation Aeropolitical and Regulatory Summit will be held in Doha on 5-6 February 2020.
  • The summit will feature senior figures from the aviation and travel industry, regulatory authorities, government officials, and academics.
  • Key speakers include CEOs from Qatar Airways, IAG, RwandAir, Royal Jordanian, and Kuwait Airways, as well as representatives from IATA, the European Commission, AACO, and AFRAA.
  • The summit will discuss topics such as open skies agreements, aviation access, regulation policies in different regions, sustainability goals, airport slots, and air cargo services.
  • The Doha Declaration 2019 called for a global review of the aviation regulatory framework and a recommitment to liberalization.
  • The summit aims to provide a platform for critical discussions on aviation regulation among industry leaders and professionals.

We invite all aviation professionals to join us in Doha in 2020 to continue the critical discussion surrounding Open Skies, aviation access and regulation among some of the most influential and esteemed leaders in the industry. To register please visit the website here.

Headline speakers include:

Qatar Airways, Group CEO, Akbar Al Baker

IATA, Director General & CEO, Alexandre de Juniac

IAG, CEO, Willie Walsh

European Commission, Director General for Mobility and Transport, Henrik Hololei

RwandAir, CEO, Yvonne Manzi Makolo

Royal Jordanian, CEO, Stefan Pichler

African Airlines Association (AFRAA), Secretary General, Abderahmane Berthe

Arab Air Carriers Organisation (AACO), Secretary General, Abdul Wahab Teffah

Kuwait Airways, CEO, Kamil Al-Awadhi

Who has their aviation settings right?

With the swathe of open skies agreements in the 1990s and the early part of the 21st century originating from the US, that development remains a vital part of the modern liberal bilateral system, however there now seems to be a wavering commitment to such a laissez-faire international marketplace.

At the same time, Canada remains committed to its (dark) Blue Skies protectionist policy. On the other side of the Atlantic, the EU has played a vital leadership role in aviation, but in the face of new entrants, airline types and aircraft, the question is how this new environment has impacted regulation policy.

For much of the Middle East, despite the highly restrictive nature of much of the aviation regulatory structure, negotiations continue for comprehensive air transport agreements, though some continue to be hampered by protectionist voices.

So, who has their aviation regulation settings right? We discuss this key theme over the course of the two-day summit.

Day 1: Wednesday 5-Feb-2020

The summit will open with a host welcome and keynote delivered by Qatar Airways CEO HE Akbar Al Baker, followed by a host Q&A session, segueing into a global regulatory discussion between moderator CAPA Chairman Emeritus Peter Harbison and distinguished panellists Mr Al Baker and IAG CEO Willie Walsh. Mr Harbison will close out the early morning with a CAPA global regulatory overview keynote.

Following a networking break, the summit sessions will recommence with the 'Where To Next for the EU's Policy Makers' panel, moderated by Leiden University Professor of Air and Space Law, Pablo Mendes de Leon, and featuring Mr Walsh, European Commission's Director General for Mobility and Transport Henrik Hololei, Arab Air Carriers Organisation (AACO) Secretary General, Abdul Wahab Teffaha, and European Parliament Coordinator for Transport and Tourism, José Ramón Bauzá Díaz.

Mr Hololei announced that the EU and Qatar approved a draft deal to sign a comprehensive air services agreement at a press conference held after this session during the 2019 CAPA Qatar Aviation Aeropolitical and Regulatory summit.

To follow there will be panels discussing aviation access across the Middle East, featuring the CEOs of Royal Jordanian and Kuwait Airways and AACO Secretary General, and aviation settings across Africa, featuring the CEOs of RwandAir and SEMIK, the AFRAA (African Airlines Association) Secretary General, and South Africa's Director of Air Transport.

Day one of the summit will continue in the afternoon with a panel in which attendees will hear from key markets across the Asia Pacific region on their aviation regulation policies to analyse different aviation settings and discuss the impact of Open Skies policies on the region.

Attendees will then hear from panellists, including US Department of Transportation Office of International Aviation Director, Brian Hedberg and Holland & Knight Partner, Anita Mosner, who will discuss North America's approach to Open Skies.

Day one will conclude with a panel on consolidation and change in the aviation sector. Topics will include:

  • The role of the regulator in responding to carrier failures;
  • Whether ownership and control rules are limiting or distorting the restructuring of the industry;
  • The impact of national insolvency and competition rules on the restructuring process; and
  • Changes in carrier cooperation in a shifting competitive landscape.

Day 2: Thursday 6-Feb-2020

One of the key recommendations of the Doha Declaration 2019 was for governments to "Enhance sustainability - in its broadest meaning - in the aviation sector".

Day two of 2020 summit will open with a panel that asks how airlines can achieve their sustainability goals and explore associated questions regarding sustainability, regulation and the aviation industry.

In a late 2019 issue of CAPA's Airline Leader, Peter Harbison described issues relating to the impact of the aviation industry on the environment, including flight shaming, pressure to adopt net zero emissions by 2050 and the looming threat of a jet fuel tax, as "one of the more alarming phenomena confronting the airline industry and its long tail of beneficiaries", making the need for high level discussion on the topic all the more important.

Day two will continue with a panel on airport slots, in which panellists from Airports Council International Europe, Worldwide Airport Coordinators Group, Airport Coordination Limited and PA Nyras will exchange views on airport privatisation, regulation of slot policy and managing airport capacity.

A panel exploring the forces and pressures shaping the air cargo services business will follow, featuring panellists from SEMIK, Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings and Winnipeg Airports Authority.

The summit will conclude, as it did in 2019, with a panel on 'The Way Ahead' in the Aeropolitical Arena.

Panellists will reflect on what was learned during the two-day 2020 summit and from the events of the past year since the release of the 2019 Doha Declaration, and will discuss the regulatory challenges and opportunities of 2020 and beyond.

For more information or to register to attend the CAPA Qatar Aviation Aeropolitical and Regulatory summit visit the website here.

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