Leadership challenges for Asian aviation

Speaking at the recent Asia Pacifi c Aviation Media Association’s (APAMA) Aviation Lecture in Singapore, the director general and CEO of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Giovanni Bisignani urged Asia to take a greater leadership role in shaping the global aviation industry. Unfortunately, cargo didn’t feature prominently in his speech despite the fact that […]


Speaking at the recent Asia Pacifi c Aviation Media Association’s (APAMA) Aviation Lecture in Singapore, the director general and CEO of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Giovanni Bisignani urged Asia to take a greater leadership role in shaping the global aviation industry. Unfortunately, cargo didn’t feature prominently in his speech despite the fact that especially Asian carriers derive a signifi cant portion of their overall revenue from cargo. Some highlights:

“Asia is a big part of the aviation world. By 2010, intra-Asia traffi c will be the largest market in the world, accounting for one third of the world’s traffi c. Critical mass comes with leadership responsibilities,” said Bisignani.

He identifi ed three opportunities for Asian leadership in the aviation industry including technology, policy and the environment.

“As the labour cost gap narrows, technology is the key to competitiveness,” said Bisignani. He highlighted electronic ticketing (ET), which will save the industry US$3 billion. While China is at 95 percent ET penetration, well above the global average of 78 percent, the rest of Asia is only 3 percent ahead of Africa at 68 percent due to the slow uptake of ET in Japan and Malaysia. “We will make our 100 percent target by the end of this year, but it will require a major effort by some carriers to catch up,” he said.