Since the Transportation Security Administration released its plans for a Large Aircraft Security Program (LASP), business aviation providers and pilots have reacted swiftly and vociferously. Reaction to the proposed regulation runs the gamut from strident opposition to resigned acceptance for what operators view as unwarranted governmental meddling in the functioning of the industry.
There is an old joke in Brazil that this largest of Latin American nations “is a country of the future, and always will be.” But things have a way of changing.
At the NBAA media breakfast, held last month at the NBAA Convention, Alan Klapmeier, GAMA chairman (and president and CEO of Cirrus), noted that the credit crunch is a problem for the general economy and for some aircraft sales, but said that productivity is the key to turning the economy around. Adding productivity is what business aviation does best, he said.
Ten days after the Dow dropped 787 points in a week, one month from the presidential election, five months before extension of the FAA’s funding expires again and 14 months until a scheduled game-changing UN meeting on the environment, the 61st NBAA Annual Meeting and Convention opened yesterday with the business aviation industry booming, but with attendees looking over their shoulders as they wait apprehensively for the boom to fall.
“I don’t think I’ve ever been so optimistic about the Asian business aviation market, especially in North Asia and China,” Jason Liao, Hawker Beechcraft’s regional vice president for China and Southeast Asia, told AIN.
The European General Aviation Safety Team (EGAST) published in April its Terms of Reference, which describe the organization’s objectives and structure. EGAST, the third element of the European Strategic Safety Initiative (ESSI), is a voluntary partnership among the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), other European intergovernmental bodies and the GA industry.
Ask former Bombardier Aerospace senior vice president for worldwide sales Jahid Fazal-Karim about the current state of the business aviation market and you’re likely to get a lesson in geography as well. Fazal-Karim, who this week became the managing director of aircraft sales and acquisition company Jetcraft Trading, said the business is increasingly becoming less U.S.-centric.
The European Commission’s director for air transport, Daniel Calleja, pledged more “proportionate” rules for business aviation in the future, acknowledging that this segment of air transport has “too often been neglected in the past.” Here at EBACE during yesterday’s opening session, other speakers included EBAA CEO Eric Mandemaker, who insisted on the association’s participation in the environmental debate, and his U.S.
Although the number of general aviation accidents last year was the lowest total since record keeping began in 1938, the NTSB noted that the accident rate increased slightly from 6.33 accidents per 100,000 flight hours in 2000 to 6.56 accidents last year.
The European General Aviation Manufacturers Association (EGAMA) was launched at EBACE’07 in a bid to more closely coordinate the industry’s interests at a European level.