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Author: Tan KW   |   Latest post: Mon, 17 Jun 2019, 5:52 PM

 

Five things to know about the airline industry in 2019

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PETALING JAYA, June 10 — Many topics were discussed at the recently held 75th International Air Transport Association (IATA) annual general meeting in Seoul, South Korea recently including sustainability, connectivity and digital transformation.

From the aviation industry’s carbon emissions to dealing with a growing ageing population, here are five things to know about the aviation industry.

 
 

Airlines will begin offsetting their carbon emissions next year onwards

One of the resolutions endorsed at the AGM was the implementation of the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA), the first global carbon pricing tool for an industry.

 

It was developed by the United Nations’ International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) to lessen the impact of air travel’s emissions.

 

The aviation industry currently contributes 2 per cent of CO2 emissions.

The aviation industry currently contributes 2 per cent of CO2 emissions. — Picture from Unsplash
The aviation industry currently contributes 2 per cent of CO2 emissions. — Picture from Unsplash

The scheme will kick in next year and participating airlines have already begun monitoring their carbon emissions.

 

 

The offsets will come in the form of a variety of activities such as wind energy, clean cookstoves, forestry and other emissions-related efforts.

CORSIA is projected to reduce around 2.5 billion tonnes of CO2 between 2021 and 2035, while the industry also aims to cut emissions by up to 80 per cent with sustainable aviation fuels.

More women in senior management positions

At the start of the AGM, IATA director general and chief executive officer Alexandre de Juniac noted that women are not advancing into senior management in airlines, acknowledging it was a big problem.

“We are missing out on the insight and innovation that gender balance would bring,” he said in his opening address.

From left: Winners of the IATA Diversity & Inclusion Awards Flybe CEO Christine Ourmières-Widener, Fadimatou Noutchemo Simo and Air New Zealand CEO Christopher Luxon representing the airline. — Picture courtesy of IATA
From left: Winners of the IATA Diversity & Inclusion Awards Flybe CEO Christine Ourmières-Widener, Fadimatou Noutchemo Simo and Air New Zealand CEO Christopher Luxon representing the airline. — Picture courtesy of IATA

Following last year’s gaffe by Qatar Airways CEO Akbar al-Baker who remarked that women can’t do his job, IATA introduced its first-ever Diversity & Inclusion Awards to honour those who demonstrate and inspire progress.

IATA regional vice president for Asia-Pacific Conrad Clifford told Malay Mail that while Asia-Pacific is quite progressive – airlines such as AirAsia, Jetstar and Qantas have had female executive managers – more needs to be done.

“We have some really fantastic examples like Madame Thao Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao of VietJet Air but there aren’t enough of them.

“Like any other region, we need more,” said Clifford.

Demand for air travel grows, cargo business suffers

According to IATA’s chief economist Brian Pearce, the airline industry is expected to deliver more choices for consumers and businesses at a lower cost this year.

There’s been a decline in cargo traffic but air travel continues to grow. — Picture courtesy of IATA
There’s been a decline in cargo traffic but air travel continues to grow. — Picture courtesy of IATA

While passenger growth is on the rise however, driven by emerging markets such as India and China, the industry is affected by trade wars and the rising price of oil.

Demand for cargo has been shown to slow down due to the US-China trade war and trade uncertainties in Europe due to Brexit.  

De Juniac explained that aviation is an industry that relies and thrives on open borders to facilitate travel and trade activities.

Making air travel accessible for the disabled

More than one billion people live with disabilities, making up 15 percent of the global population and IATA is committed to making air travel easier and more accessible.

That figure is expected to rise as the ageing population across the globe rises as well as chronic diseases.

IATA is committed to making air travel easier and more accessible for persons with disabilities. — Picture courtesy of IATA
IATA is committed to making air travel easier and more accessible for persons with disabilities. — Picture courtesy of IATA

An important demographic for the air transport sector, IATA says it is committed to promoting accessibility for disabled persons and those with reduced mobility through a holistic approach encompassing regulation, processes partnerships and communications.

Unruly passengers won’t be able to get away with their antics for much longer

From drunks to peeing on a plane’s seat, we’ve all read nightmarish tales of passengers misbehaving on flights.

The issue of disruptive behaviour on air not only diminishes the comfort of others but may jeopardise flight safety.

According to IATA’s senior vice president for member external relations Paul Steele, one incident happens every 1,053 flights and they are becoming more common and severe.

While most rowdy passengers get away scot-free, that will change soon enough.

Due to differing laws in respective countries, it could be difficult to charge unruly passengers under the local law enforcement.

One of the ways to prevent passengers from behaving badly is through a deterrent known as the Montreal Protocol 2014 (MP14) found in the Tokyo Convention which allows the country in which the unruly passenger lands in to take action irrespective of where the aircraft is registered.

Thus far, 19 states have ratified the treaty including Malaysia this year and three more signatories are required to bring the amendment into force which IATA says is most likely later this year.

IATA represents around 290 airlines that make up 82 percent of global air traffic, and in Malaysia national carrier Malaysia Airlines is the only member.

 
 
 
 
https://www.malaymail.com/news/life/2019/06/10/five-things-to-know-about-the-airline-industry-in-2019/1760775
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