21-Nov-2016 2:35 AM

AAPA: Barriers imposed by governments remain challenge to profits and growth

Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) reported (18-Nov-2016) it sees barriers imposed by governments as a continued threat to short-term airlines profitability in the Asia Pacific region and also a detriment to maximum potential in the long-term. AAPA noted that given the the economically dynamic and increasingly outward looking nature of the region's aviation industry, and with no signs of traffic growth slowing despite global economic uncertainties and geopolitical instabilities, it is critical that long-standing obstacles are removed. Key areas of consideration are:

  • Environment: Success of the new Carbon Offsetting & Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) agreement under ICAO will be "ensuring that governments carry through with full support for the agreement to achieve global reach and minimise competitive market distortions". In addition, regional governments "need to specifically commit to aviation infrastructure investments that keep pace with demand growth and environmental targets";
  • Safety: AAPA "remains deeply concerned about safety oversight in the region", where carriers can sometimes find themselves subject to restrictions or even banned from operating to other countries, due to a lack of effective national regulatory oversight in line with international standards. AAPA called on governments to respect ICAO standards and strongly support the 'No Country Left Behind' campaign. In addition, AAPA opposes unilateral imposition of extra-territorial measures and operating restrictions "where airlines can find themselves being held responsible for the shortcomings of their national regulatory authorities";
  • Passenger facilitation: AAPA stated governments need to fundamentally rethink policies that should aim to strike a more reasonable balance between passenger facilitation and aviation security, such that unnecessary inconvenience and delays are minimised. Advanced identity document technologies, including biometrics and machine readable travel documents "have proved effective to help streamline passenger and crew processing, whilst strengthening aviation security";
  • Taxes and charges: AAPA renewd its call for governments to carefully consider the overall economic effects of putting further financial strain on the travelling public and the aviation industry and to refrain from increasing the tax burden in any form. It called for adherence to ICAO policies on taxation and to avoid imposing unjustified or discriminatory taxes on international aviation. AAPA also called on airport authorities and ANSPs to adopt transparent, fair and non-discriminatory charges in accordance with ICAO principles;
  • Health pandemics: AAPA called on governments and health authorities to collaborate and coordinate with WHO and other governments in managing the potential impact of health pandemics by focusing collective efforts and resources on fighting the spread of diseases at source and by properly informing and educating the travelling public. It also called on governments and health authorities to avoid imposing measures on airlines that unnecessarily disrupt normal operations in ways that would have disproportionate impacts compared to the actual risk level. [more - original PR

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