The Assembly of Presidents of the Association of
Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) together with IATA and Airports
Council International (ACI) Asia-Pacific, issued a joint
declaration on Monday, highlighting their commitment to ensure the
continued safety of aviation as well as reviving air travel.
Against the backdrop of the ongoing global COVID19
pandemic that has severely affected air travel and tourism this
year, the declaration expresses firm support for ICAO Council
Aviation Recovery Task Force (CART) guidance which is the basis of
the aviation industry’s risk mitigation measures aimed at
safeguarding the safety and well-being of air travellers.
In addition to the joint declaration, the AAPA
Assembly of Presidents issued a number of resolutions addressing
various industry priorities.
The Assembly views the setting up of a robust
international testing framework, based on mutually-recognised
accredited facilities delivering rapid, accurate, affordable and
scalable testing prior to departure, coupled with other risk
mitigation measures recommended by ICAO, as an effective approach
to safely restart international air travel.
Blanket quarantine measures are a significant
deterrent to air travel, and the Assembly calls for these to be
reviewed in the context of suitable risk mitigation measures.
Reaffirming the industry’s commitment to
environmental sustainability, the Assembly of Presidents also
renewed their call on governments to respect the integrity of ICAO
CORSIA and refrain from applying duplicative requirements on
international aviation CO2 emissions, as well as to support the
use of sustainable aviation fuel, so that the industry can reduce
its reliance on fossil fuels.
Noting that a broad framework conducive to the
early restart and recovery of aviation is urgently needed, AAPA
called on governments to refrain from increasing the burden of
aviation levies in any form and to support Asia Pacific airlines
as they face unprecedented financial and operational challenges
due to the prolonged grounding of international aviation.
‘’The ICAO CART guidelines established
earlier this year provide practical guidance to governments and
industry to restart aviation and recover from COVID19 in a
coordinated manner, while keeping the safety, health and wellbeing
of the travelling public as a top priority. Inconsistent and
patchy measures create unpredictability and confusion for both
travellers and airlines, while hampering the meaningful restart of
cross border air transport,’’ said Mr. Subhas Menon, Director
General of AAPA. ‘’The prolonged closure of borders has had deep
and lasting effects on the public and the wider economy. It has
now become critical to improve collaboration and cooperation
across borders so as to mitigate further damage and jump start
recovery efforts. Asia Pacific airlines are firmly committed to
working with governments and other stakeholders to rebuild
passenger confidence and pave the way for the meaningful recovery
of travel and tourism as essential services supporting commerce
and livelihoods within the region and across the world.’’
Subhas Menon, Director General of the Association
of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA), gives a virtual media briefing on
the state of the industry via Zoom on 16 November 2020.
Traditionally, this state of the industry briefing
would take place at the AAPA Assembly of Presidents which
last year was supposed to be in Hong Kong and this year in
Fukuoka, Japan. Sadly, the 2019 event was cancelled because of the
increasingly unpredictable and violent protests in Hong Kong at
that time, and this year could not be held due to COVID19. The AAPA
Assembly of Presidents is next supposed to take place in Thailand
– hosted by Thai Airways International –
in November 2021.
The last AAPA state of the industry media briefing
to take place in person was in 2018 in Jeju, South Korea. You can
watch the video of that media briefing, and others here:
Asia Pacific Aviation Industry Update – AAPA Assembly of
Capella to Open 47-Room Hotel in Hanoi, Vietnam