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Join us in Brazil for the CAPA Latin America Aviation & LCCs Summit 2022, 25/26 August

Analysis

CAPA – Centre for Aviation returns to Latin America with the CAPA Latin America ‘Aviation & LCCs Summit’. Hosted in Salvador, Brazil on 25/26-Aug-2022, the summit will bring together hundreds of senior aviation and transport leaders to consider the key topics and questions that are facing the aviation and travel industry in the region.

For more information or to register visit the CAPA Latin America Aviation & LCCs Summit registration website

Latin America and the Caribbean was the last to be hit by COVID-19, and regional airlines initially had a tougher pandemic than most, facing tight travel restrictions and almost zero direct government support. The expectation was that the region would be the last to pull itself out from the crisis.

However, since the start of 2022 Latin America’s recovery has notably outperformed that of other regions. Travel restrictions imposed by governments on international traffic have been eased or eliminated, rules around COVID-19 have been streamlined and simplified, and the region is benefiting from substitution away from regions still closed off to travel.

Much work remains to be done, but with the regional recovery well advanced, the stage is set to move the conversation past COVID-19. Key themes and topics to be covered in major sessions at the upcoming CAPA Latin America ‘Aviation & LCCs Summit’ include:

Regional airline partnerships & consolidation

Restructuring and mergers & acquisitions are creating a new competitive equilibrium in Latin America. The process is ongoing, although regulators, lingering COVID-19 disruptions and other factors threaten to slow up the pace of consolidation. Questions to be considered include:

  • What new forms of aviation partnerships are emerging in Latin America?
  • What are the advantages of each kind of tie-up, and are other new partnerships in the offing?
  • Who will make the next big moves in Latin American market consolidation?

Sustainability, green fuels and the future of mobility

COVID-19 pulled public attention onto sustainability like never before, putting pressure on the industry to up its game on emissions and meet or beat its already ambitious commitments. A major component of the industry reaching its targets will be the development and adoption of sustainable aviation fuels – an area where progress in Latin America has been conspicuously slow. Industry experts at the CAPA Latin America ‘Aviation & LCCs Summit’ will look into the future to consider the challenges to be met and milestones to be achieved as the industry looks to meet its commitments.

New selling strategies and changes to distribution & retailing

Passenger expectations continue to change – not just in the air, but across the entire travel landscape: from considering options for travel and purchasing airfares to how passengers interact with travel provider before, during and after their journey. With major retailers from outside the travel industry continuing to make inroads into the market, consumers are increasingly demanding an online retail experience that aligns with their experience in industries and marries convenience, ease and protection of their privacy. These new digital experience expectations are also extending into ancillary area, airline loyalty programmes and the relationships with alliances and other partnership. Adapting selling strategies to this new consumer and distribution landscape will require and ongoing transformation for airlines in Latin America.

Regional fleet review

Latin America carriers emerged from COVID-19 with slimmed down, younger and more efficient fleets. However, much remains to be done with regards to returning stored aircraft to operation and further enhancing the operation of commercial airliners in the region. Latin American carrier’s order books are dominated by new generation narrowbodies, but demand for widebodies, turboprops and regional jets mostly absent. With the region expected to require at least 2500 new aircraft over the next two decades, questions to be addressed include:

  • What are the prospects for regional fleet development and make-up?
  • How do airlines in the region structure their fleets to ensure they can be competitive with regional and inter-continental peers?
  • Should airlines be looking beyond mainline narrowbodies, in order to broaden their operations and markets they can access?

New entrants poised to break into the market

The unprecedented COVID-19 era has been marked by airlines slimming down, going dormant, exiting the market completely. Yet, investor optimism about the prospects for airlines in Latin America remains undaunted, with the expectation that the crisis has produced opportunities for start-ups that would be denied to them in a more regular situation. , Latin America is seeing a rich influx of new airline market entry, with more than a dozen start-up airlines either underway or planning to commence operations over the next few years. The CAPA Latin America ‘Aviation & LCCs Summit’ will consider what market opportunities exist across Latin America for the new entrants, the performance and progress of existing start-ups and their prospects as demand continues to recover.

Network planning strategies

As barriers to international travel continue to come down and networks begin to normalise, how have the network planning strategies of Latin American carriers adapted and changed? The day-to-day changes presented by the coronavirus pandemic meant regional airlines needed to be creative and adaptive with their network planning, just to meet new operational considerations. New routes were launched and networks and operational patterns modified to chase what demand was there. However, with the airline business facing changes such as the decline in business travel, the introduction of new travel buying patterns and fleet mix changes, how should airlines continue to modify their network planning strategies?

Regional airport challenges

While airlines grabbed most of the headlines during the pandemic, airports also saw their competitive landscapes fundamentally altered by the coronavirus. In Latin America, the issue of investment in infrastructure development remains central – post-pandemic, many governments lack the funds for widescale airport improvement and there is an ongoing reluctance to privatise key national assets in several major markets. Outside of this, airports also face scrutiny over their environmental credentials and face an operating environment characterised by high costs, taxes and fees and regulatory flux.

Hear from an unparalleled line up of industry leaders

Speakers at the CAPA Latin America ‘Aviation & LCCs Summit’ on these and other topics include CEOs from airlines representing more than 25% of regional traffic. Alongside them will be senior aviation executives from airports and major industry suppliers, representatives from regional and international aviation industry bodies, aviation sector exports, regulators and political leaders and more. They will provide thought leadership, networking opportunities, and in-depth insight on the issues and trends that shape the industry in Latin America and globally.

Key industry leaders attending the CAPA Latin America Aviation & LCCs Summit:

Azul CEO John Rodgerson
TAP CEO Christine Ourmières
GOL CEO Celso Ferrer
Ultra Air CEO William Shaw
Flybondi CEO Mauricio Sana
ALTA Executive Director & CEO José Ricardo Botelho
Azul Chief Revenue Officer Abhi Shah
GOL Strategic Alliances, International & Industry Affairs Randall Saenz Aguero
Equair CEO Gabriela Sommerfeld
IATA Regional Vice President The Americas Peter Cerda
ACI - Latin America & Caribbean Director General Rafael Echevarne

VINCI Airports Chief Commercial and Operational Officer Pierre-Hugues Schmit

...and many others. 

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