The International Air Transport Association (IATA) urged Russian and European officials meeting at the Euro-Russia Aviation Summit in St. Petersburg to make global standards the cornerstone of their discussions on the development of aviation in these two important markets.
“Re-emphasizing Russian and European leadership in the development of aviation based on global standards would be the most important conclusion of this summit. The Russia-Europe relationship is strategically important for global aviation. Combined, Europe and Russia account for about 37% of world traffic capacity and control a critical portion of airspace. These two markets have a great impact on global aviation—operationally, commercially and from a policy perspective,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO, while addressing the opening plenary of the summit.
Global air transport was built on global standards. “Governments and industry have worked closely together with the common purpose of linking the world safely, securely, efficiently and with the highest level of environmental responsibility. Industry is here today as a committed partner to working with Europe and Russia in the further development of sustainable global air links,” said Tyler.
IATA emphasized the key industry priorities of safety, security, environment and a level commercial playing field:
- Safety: “Working with carriers operating Western-built jets and more modern Russian equipment, the IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) has made a big difference in Russia’s safety performance. Of course, IOSA carries no guarantees. But none of the 14 Russian IOSA carriers has had a fatal accident since registration. I believe that this is more than a coincidence. We are eager to work with the government to further integrate this standard into Russian aviation, along with our safety audit for ground operations—ISAGO,” said Tyler. IATA also noted that infrastructure in Russia needs major upgrades to support both safe and efficient operations. “As users of the system, we stand ready to provide our expertise to ensure that these investments deliver the best value for the investments that are required.”
- Security: “IATA is championing a Checkpoint of the Future concept that will make airport screening processes both more effective and more convenient. This will work best as part of a global system. I am encouraged by the support from the US and the EU. I hope that Russia will soon join the growing list of countries endorsing this concept.”
- Environment: IATA urged Euro-Russian cooperation to support aviation’s ambitious environmental commitments. “Our interest is in reducing emissions to ensure aviation’s long-term license to grow. The best results will come if governments cooperate globally to facilitate our success with coordinated measures under the leadership of the International Civil Aviation Organization. I hope that this summit will be an opportunity to identify solutions to the growing rift between Europe and the rest of the world as a result of Europe’s unilateral approach to including international aviation in its emissions trading scheme from next year.”
- Level Commercial Playing Field: “Protectionism or isolationism is never a long-term solution for a healthy industry,” said Tyler who noted that IATA’s Simplifying the Business program is a good example of global standards bringing market benefits. “Minister Igor Levitin’s personal intervention changed legislation that facilitated e-ticketing. This ensured that Russian carriers received their share of the $3 billion annual savings achieved by eliminating paper tickets worldwide. Now we encourage the Russian government to adopt the Montreal Convention 1999 so that e-freight can bring similar benefits to Russia’s fast-growing cargo industry.”