Home' Asian Aviation : AAV October 2017 Contents AsianAviation | October 2017 43
AAV: Do you think the AsBAA has a loud enough "voice" to e ectively
promote the development of business aviation in Asia, or could more
be done on that front?
JL: AsBAA's voice has become not simply "loud", but trusted,
measured, skilled, reasonable and constructive. We see the value
of our collective expertise as representing the needs of the in-
dustry in a way that is respected and valued by policymakers. We
can action change because we understand aviation. We know the
economic benefits it brings to cities and when challenges arise,
we have sensible solutions to overcome these. AsBAA will always
act in the best interests of the industry, although we're making
great progress, there will always be more we can do. Just as our
counterparts, NBAA and EBAA continue to expand and work to
represent their members, so will AsBAA.
AsBAA has three key pillars --- Representation, Advocacy, Com-
munity --- under these three areas, our work will evolve and ad-
vance but remain on-going, meaning, yes, the voice will become
. There will always be shifts in public perception, govern-
ment policy or the economy that need to be addressed under
the first two pillars. Likewise, we have a role to educate the next
generation of aviators --- inspiring younger people from as young
as 10 about careers in business and general aviation. This work will,
and must continue for many decades to come. Finally, AsBAA has
built and is building a strong community through which we tackle
common issues together, network and access B2B opportunities.
As the industry grows and matures, and new professionals move
in and out of it, the community will remain a vital resource. In sum-
mary, we know that to be effective, we do not need to have a loud
voice, only the right tone of voice, heard
by the right ears. AsBAA's influence is
growing all the time, so we're confident
our voice is being heard.
AAV: Is it safe to assume there is a growing
awareness and appreciation of the busi-
ness aviation industry among government,
regulatory agencies and the public in Asia? How can it promote
economic growth and development across the region?
JL: To some extent, yes. However, there is still a lot of work to be
done to help build appreciation and understanding of the value
of the industry among those that can make its potential growth
a reality. AsBAA regularly meets with governments and transport
ministries to support this area of work under our advocacy pillar.
We also develop papers to present the evidence that the busi-
ness and general aviation industry brings economic growth to
the regions in which it can operate with minimal disruption and
AAV: What are some of the main issues preventing the growth of
business aviation in Asia?
JL: Some of the significant issues are: accessibility to existing
airports, lack of development of new airports with business and
general aviation in mind, attracting and retaining talent, safety
standards and best practise, public perception and the regulatory
environment. Also accessibility to major tier one airports, especially
those where there are no viable alternatives currently available due
to a lack of infrastructure. Those cities in Asia that have or had two
airports, have enjoyed better growth potential for our sector. Hong
Kong as an example redeveloped its downtown Kai Tak Airport since
it opened Chep Lak Kok not knowing the business and general
aviation sector and the LCC sectors would explode in the interim.
Now Chep Lak Kok is at maximum capacity after 20 years of op-
eration --- a good 10 years earlier than expected when it was built.
The airport and city is also seeing the biggest decline in under 18
months in business and general aviation tra ic movements because
of pressure from the commercial scheduled sectors of national flag
carriers, LCCs and cargo air freight demand upswing, which have
all had a detrimental e ect. Ultimately, Hong Kong and other hubs
in the region need more dedicated business and general aviation
infrastructure in well-located areas. If these are constructed too far
away from city or source, it does not provide the convenience users
require and are willing to pay for. Helicopters in some cities are a
viable solution, but again a lack of coordination at the development
planning stage and engagement at all levels of government and with
industry has prevented freedom of movement and ease of operations
from developing thus far.
The above is really the key issue long term, but there are also
struggles day-to-day with a lack of slots and FBOs that are true
FBOs (and not just lounges). Also, as the sector becomes more
diverse, there is a need to educate "inexperienced players" on
standards and best practice. Occasionally there is a skills gap in
the industry that, in some cases led to lower standards. Organi-
sations like AsBAA seek to promote the highest levels of safety
standards. We educate and share best practice through events
such as our annual Safety Day, which Bombardier is the main
sponsor of in 2017-18.
Locally and suitably qualified maintenance technicians with
the required work experience can still be a challenge to source
locally. However, we have seen an improvement in this in the last
two years, with more aircraft now having maintenance checks per-
formed in Asia (as opposed to the US and Europe). We have seen
a good example of this in Singapore, where much of the region's
maintenance work is carried out at Seletar Airport. This is a clear
indicator that to grow and make a positive economic impact, the
...we have a role to educate the next generation of aviators ---
inspiring younger people from as young as 10 about careers
in business and general aviation. This work will, and must
continue for many decades to come.
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