Build 1

European Aviation Safety Agency

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) is an agency of the European Union established in 2002 in order to ensure a high and uniform level of safety in civil aviation through the implementation of common safety rules and measures (Skybrary, 2011). After a period of overlap, EASA assumed the responsibilities of the former Joint Aviation Authorities (JAA) system which ceased on 30 June 2009 but it is not a successor agency in legal terms since it functions directly under EU statute (Skybrary, 2011). The main difference between EASA and the JAA is while the JAA relied upon the individual countries to harmonize their guidance with JAA directives with no force of law, the EASA is regulatory authority which requires EU countries to implement its regulations (Skybrary, 2011). According to its website, EASA’s mission is to promote the highest common standards of safety and environmental protection in civil aviation in Europe and worldwide and its responsibilities include expert advice to the EU for drafting new legislation; implementing and monitoring safety rules, including inspections in the Member States; type-certification of aircraft and components, as well as the approval of organizations involved in the design, manufacture and maintenance of aeronautical products; authorization of third-country (non EU) operators and safety analysis and research (EASA, 2011b)

EASA lists several future challenges it envisions for itself, particularly where environmental matters are concerned. EASA is especially focused on rising noise levels around airports due to increased traffic movements; increased nitrous oxide pollutants in the air around airports and the effect of greenhouse gases generated by aviation on global climate change (EASA, 2011a).

Transport Canada

Canada has been recognized as having one of the most successful and safest civil aviation programs in the world and Transport Canada works with many partners inside and outside of its borders to protect and maintain its air safety and security record, and to make air travel more environmentally responsible (Transport Canada, 2011). Transport Canada is the regulatory agency that controls all transportation in the country, but its aviation branch maintains very similar functions to that of EASA. A look at the regulatory functions presented on its Air Transport website reveals that Transport Canada oversees aircraft airworthiness, aircraft and operator certification, operations rules, pilot licensing, airport regulation and more (Transport Canada, 2011). Transport Canada was one of the first aviation regulatory bodies to embrace the ICAO concept of Safety Management Systems at the national level and insist on the implementation of SMS as a requirement for private or commercial operator certification (Transport Canada, 2010a).

Transport Canada sees itself facing future challenges in several areas. Government of Canada initiatives will continue to impact the Civil Aviation Program; the trend toward increased globalization highlights the need for greater harmonization of standards and regulations and smart regulations; industry growth, while somewhat slowed in the wake of the current economic downturn, is back on track and will require additional infrastructure and technology to accommodate it; budget limitations and a trend towards performance-based organization will drive manning levels down and affect the number of available personnel to monitor the safety framework; and the need to reduce the current accident rate which will reduce confidence as the number or aircraft operations increase (Transport Canada, 2010b).

Air Safety Support International

Air Safety Support International (ASSI) performs the same functions that EASA and TC does but instead of being a governmental agency, it is a not-for-profit, wholly-owned, subsidiary company of the UK Civil Aviation Authority, established under Directions from the United Kingdom's Department for Transport. The company's primary objective is to help provide a more cohesive system of civil aviation safety regulation in the United Kingdom Overseas Territories which include Anguilla, Bermuda, the British Indian Ocean Territory, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, the Falkland Islands, Montserrat, Pitcairn, Henderson, Ducie and Oneo Islands, South Georgia and Sandwich Islands, St. Helena and Dependencies, and the Turks and Caicos Islands (Air Safety Support International, 2006). ASSI is responsible for supporting the Overseas Territories' existing authorities in the safety regulation of all aspects of civil aviation, including the licensing of personnel and the certification of aircraft, airlines, airports and air traffic control (Air Safety Support International, 2006). In Territories where the civil aviation regulator does not have the resources to undertake the task themselves, then ASSI can be designated by the Governor to perform the civil aviation regulatory tasks on behalf of the Governor (Air Safety Support International, 2006).

As far as future challenges are concerned, ASSI is taking its cues largely from EASA and ICAO. ASSI and EASA are working together to harmonize their directives and regulations using the ICAO Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) as a common baseline (EBAA, 2010). For business aviation, the SARPS translate into IS-BAO, the international standard for business aircraft operations. IS-BAO is currently under adoption by many operators worldwide and its requirement for an SMS makes it mandatory in EASA countries and will soon make it mandatory in ASSI territories (EBAA, 2010). ASSI and EASA reflect the trend of increasing globalization in aviation, even among corporate jet operators.


The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), is a specialized agency of the United Nations. It codifies the principles and techniques of international air navigation and fosters the planning and development of international air transport to ensure safe and orderly growth. Its headquarters are located in the Quartier International of Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The ICAO Council adopts standards and recommended practices concerning air navigation, its infrastructure, flight inspection, prevention of unlawful interference, and facilitation of border-crossing procedures for international civil aviation. In addition, the ICAO defines the protocols for air accident investigation followed by transport safety authorities in countries signatory to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, commonly known as the Chicago Convention. ICAO members are 191 of the United Nations members and the Cook Islands. The non-member states are Dominica, Liechtenstein, Niue, Tuvalu, Vatican City and the states with limited recognition.

The ICAO also standardizes certain functions for use in the airline industry, such as the Aeronautical Message Handling System AMHS; this probably makes it a standards organization. The ICAO defines an International Standard Atmosphere (also known as ICAO Standard Atmosphere), a model of the standard variation of pressure, temperature, density, and viscosity with altitude in the Earth's atmosphere. This is useful in calibrating instruments and designing aircraft.

The ICAO standardizes machine-readable passports worldwide. Such passports have an area where some of the information otherwise written in textual form is written as strings of alphanumeric characters, printed in a manner suitable for optical character recognition. This enables border controllers and other law enforcement agents to process such passports quickly, without having to input the information manually into a computer. ICAO publishes Doc 9303, Machine Readable Travel Documents, the technical standard for machine-readable passports. A more recent standard is for biometric passports. These contain biometrics to authenticate the identity of travellers. The passport's critical information is stored on a tiny RFID computer chip, much like information stored on smartcards. Like some smartcards, the passport book design calls for an embedded contactless chip that is able to hold digital signature data to ensure the integrity of the passport and the biometric data.

Communication, Navigation, Surveillance / Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) systems are communications, navigation, and surveillance systems, employing digital technologies, including satellite systems together with various levels of automation, applied in support of a seamless global air traffic management system.


The International Council of Aircraft Owner and Pilot Associations (IAOPA) is a nonprofit federation of 68 autonomous, nongovernmental, national general aviation organizations. IAOPA has represented international general aviation for more than 35 years.

The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association of the U.S.A. spearheaded the formation of IAOPA. An interim organization came into being on February 2, 1962, with four other groups joining AOPA-U.S. to form the nucleus of what was to be the permanent organization. The founding groups were:
  • Aircraft Owners and Pilots Assn.-U.S.A.
  • Aircraft Owners and Pilots Assn.-Australia
  • Aircraft Owners and Pilots Assn.-South Africa
  • Canadian Owners and Pilots Assn.
  • Philippine Airmen's Organization (AOPA Philippines)

One of the provisions in the IAOPA Constitution and Bylaws is that only one organization will be accepted from each country. An informal objective worked out between the founders and ICAO headquarters officials was that a minimum number of countries would be represented in IAOPA before the organization would apply to ICAO for official status. In the interim, IAOPA participated in ICAO meetings by specific invitation.

  • The permanent IAOPA organization came into being on October 22, 1964. On this day the organization also was accorded accredited status by ICAO.
  • There are currently 68 IAOPA affiliate organizations representing the interests of more than 470,000 aircraft pilots and owners worldwide.
  • The combined total of individuals represented by these constituent member groups of IAOPA is over 470,000 pilots, who fly general aviation aircraft for business and personal transportation. General aviation is defined by ICAO as "All civil aviation operations other than scheduled air services and non-scheduled air transport operations for remuneration or hire."

IAOPA Objectives

  • To facilitate the movement of general aviation aircraft internationally, for peaceful purposes, in order to develop friendship and understanding among the peoples of the world and to increase the utility, of the general aviation airplanes as a means of personal and business transportation;
  • To coordinate with other international and national organizations to promote better understanding of general aviation's requirements and further the interests of the membership;
  • To integrate the views and requirements of member organizations with regard to international standards, recommended practices, procedures. facilities and services for international general aviation, providing forums as appropriate for meetings of representatives of the member groups;
  • To advance the interests of general aviation internationally and to represent the membership on matters of interest to general aviation at pertinent meetings of the International Civil Aviation Organization, WMO, ITU, EEC, etc.;
  • To encourage the implementation of planned systems, facilities, services and procedures in order to promote flight safety, efficiency and utility in the use of general aviation aircraft;
  • To encourage representatives of national general aviation member groups to meet with and work with their national authorities in the interest of promoting better understanding, enlightened regulation and adequate facilities for general aviation;
  • To encourage the collection from ICAO Contracting States and dissemination by ICAO of information, data and statistics relating to general aviation to provide a meaningful base for development of technical programs.

The International System Safety Society

The International System Safety Society is a non-profit organization supporting safety professionals worldwide. With a wide range of individual and corporate members, the Society is affiliated with major corporations, educational institutions and other agencies. The system safety concept focuses on the application of systems engineering and systems management to the process of hazard, safety, and risk analysis. Chapters around the globe, the annual International System Safety Conference, and the renowned Journal of System Safety are just a few of the means by which it strives to accomplish its objectives. The International System Safety Society is the only professional organization specifically dedicated to promotion of the system safety concept at the local, national, and international level.

Objectives and Activities of the Society:

  • Advance the state-of-the-art of System Safety,
  • Contribute to a meaningful managerial and technological understanding of System Safety,
  • Disseminate newly developed knowledge to all interested groups and parties,
  • Improve the public understanding of the System Safety process and discipline,
  • Promote System Safety to all levels of management, engineering and other professional groups,
  • Foster communication within the System Safety profession and with other scientific, legal, public and professional groups,
  • Encourage research into the development and application of new safety management, scientific or engineering techniques
  • Encourage System Safety professional development and education.

The International Society of Air Safety Investigators

ISASI is a society formed to promote air safety by the exchange of ideas, experiences and information about aircraft accident investigations, and to otherwise aid in the advancement of flight safety; to promote technical advancement by providing professional education through lectures, displays and presentations and by the exchange of information for mutual development of improved investigations; to broaden professional relationships among members; to maintain and increase the prestige, standing and influence of the Air Safety Investigator in matters of air safety. The Society was founded in the United States under articles of incorporation in the District of Columbia on August 14, 1964. At the organizational meeting, the governing by-laws of the Society were adopted, and the first slate of officers elected.

With the establishment of the Canadian and Australian Societies' and over 100 individual members from 35 countries, the international nature of the Society was recognized in 1977, and the name of the Society was changed to The International Society of Air Safety Investigators to reflect the changes. Affiliated National/Regional Societies are located in the United States, Canada, Australia, Europe, New Zealand, and Russia. Assisting in the work of the Society are three Standing Committees, six Special Objective Committees, and technical Working Groups to address Aircraft Accident Investigation Policy and Standards, Government Air Safety Investigation, Human Factors, Flight Recorder and Technical Library issues for the Society.

International Organization for Standardization

ISO (International Organization for Standardization) is the world's largest developer and publisher of International Standards. ISO is a network of the national standards institutes of 163 countries, one member per country, with a Central Secretariat in Geneva, Switzerland, that coordinates the system. ISO is a non-governmental organization that forms a bridge between the public and private sectors. On the one hand, many of its member institutes are part of the governmental structure of their countries, or are mandated by their government. On the other hand, other members have their roots uniquely in the private sector, having been set up by national partnerships of industry associations. Therefore, ISO enables a consensus to be reached on solutions that meet both the requirements of business and the broader needs of society.

Standards ensure desirable characteristics of products and services such as quality, environmental friendliness, safety, reliability, efficiency, and interchangeability - and at an economical cost. What ISO standards do:

  • make the development, manufacturing and supply of products and services more efficient, safer and cleaner
  • facilitate trade between countries and make it fairer
  • provide governments with a technical base for health, safety and environmental legislation, and conformity assessment
  • share technological advances and good management practice
  • disseminate innovation
  • safeguard consumers, and users in general, of products and services
  • make life simpler by providing solutions to common problems

United Nations

The United Nations will continue to be challenged with issues related to increased air travel worldwide. These issues include maintaining an air traffic control system that can safely manage more aircraft with more advanced technology. Seamless transition for aircraft between national airspace will be important for promoting economic growth. Varying technology levels of air traffic management systems along with political tensions between countries will create challenges for the United Nations.

International Airlines

The international airline industry provides service to nearly every corner of the globe, and has been an integral part of the creation of a global economy. The airline industry itself is a major economic force, both in terms of its own operations and its impacts on related industries such as aircraft manufacturing and tourism.

Today, the global airline industry consists of over 2000 airlines operating more than 23,000 aircraft, providing service to over 3700 airports. In 2006, the world’s airlines flew almost 28 million scheduled flight departures and carried over 2 billion passengers. The growth of world air travel has averaged approximately 5% per year over the past 30 years, with substantial yearly variations due both to changing economic conditions and differences in economic growth in different regions of the world. Historically, the annual growth in air travel has been about twice the annual growth in GDP. Even with relatively conservative expectations of economic growth over the next 10-15 years, a continued 4-5% annual growth in global air travel will lead to a doubling of total air travel during this period.

Airlines around the world are encountering a growing wave of liberalization if not outright deregulation, and as a result are facing competitive pressures, both from new entrant low-cost airlines and re-structured legacy carriers. The rapid growth of the global airline industry and the continued threat of terrorist attacks make safety and security issues critical to every airline, and every airline passenger. And, the need for expanded aviation infrastructure, both airports and air traffic control, is of particular importance to emerging economies of the world such as India, China, Africa and the Middle East, where much greater rates of demand growth are forecast for both passenger and cargo air transportation.

Chinese Aviation Industry

The data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) shows that Air China maintained a double-digit growth in the international passenger volume in 2011 and it has been rapidly expanding its international market. Boeing estimated that Asian powerhouse China would need 5,000 new planes worth $600 billion by 2030 -- raising a previous forecast of 4,330 planes by 2029 -- as growing wealth among the country's middle class triggers an air-travel boom.

ATA also believes that the Chinese market will become one of the forces moving forward the development of the global aviation industry. Given the impact of the high-speed railway projects on the demand of the domestic aviation market as well as the further expansion of foreign airlines in the Chinese market, China's aviation industry will face more opportunities and challenges. It has been continuously improving its infrastructure. However, the existing airports in primary cities, such as Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou, are still not adequate to meet the ever-increasing passenger and freight demand. The Chinese aviation industry should draw on the experience of certain successful airlines in Singapore and the Middle East.

Due to the rapid economic and trade development in the Asia-Pacific region in recent years, Singapore's Changi Airport has strengthened cooperation with its Chinese and Indian counterparts and has opened flights to certain cities in China. Many passengers who fly from India, China or Malaysia to Europe, the United States or Australia now choose Changi Airport as their transfer point, and many European and American passengers often choose to fly to their final destinations in Asia via Singapore.

The development pattern of the Middle East's booming aviation industry also deserves special attention. Emirates Airline currently flies to more than 100 destinations in some 60 countries around the world, and its service network is constantly expanding. The report from Boeing showed that the international traffic continued to grow during 2010, rising 17.8% for Middle Eastern that was much higher than the world average growth of 8.2%. According to the IATA, the fastest-growing markets for international passenger traffic during the 2009-2014 period will be China, the United Arab Emirates, Vietnam, Malaysia and Sri Lanka.

US and EU

The other two major markets for airline services are the US and Europe. Airlines from EU countries are free to fly anywhere they like within the EU, however, foreign airlines are restricted by agreements made with individual countries within the EU. In the United States, the domestic market is effectively closed to foreign airlines.
Because of the close markets, the airline with large domestic market has a quite significant strategic advantage. This is because the larger the market, the greater the opportunity to optimize feeder traffic from that market to the international trunk routes. The result of this highly regulated network of air transport services means that an airline based outside the US and EU is unable to optimize their traffic flow.

Global Environmental Controls for Aviation

Aviation contributes to the overall climate change impact of human activities and the environmental impact of greenhouse gas emissions from aircraft can be mitigated through measures to tackle climate change in the EU and third countries, especially in developing countries, and to fund research and development for mitigation and adaptation including in particular in the fields of aeronautics and air transport. “Air travel is the world's fastest growing source of greenhouse gases.” --CNN Nov.6, 2007.

Figure 1. Worldwide comparison.

The Kyoto Protocol requires industrialized countries to reduce their collective emissions of greenhouse gases by approximately 5% by 2008-2012 compared with 1990 levels, with the reduction varying from country to country. The agreed targets apply to national totals of greenhouse gases. Consequently, countries can determine how the various emission-producing sectors in their economies should be called upon to assist in achieving the country’s national target. Under Kyoto rules, domestic aviation should be considered part of national totals. International aviation, along with shipping, is not covered by the protocol.

Under the Kyoto protocol, responsibility for seeing that developed countries limited and reduced their aviation GHG emissions was handed to Icao. But in the 12 years since the protocol was signed, ICAO has not only done nothing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from aircraft but has put numerous obstacles in the way. Modernizing the global air traffic control system presents the world with its greatest short-term opportunity to improve aviation's environmental performance. The International Air Transport Association estimates that air traffic management solutions can improve fuel efficiency by up to 12 percent with a corresponding reduction in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Other authorities estimate even greater improvements could result from modernizing the global air traffic system.

World Meteorological Organization

Established in 1950, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN), with the formal authority to speak accordingly on the state and behavior of the Earth's atmosphere, its interaction with the oceans, the climate it produces and the resulting distribution of water resources. WMO promotes cooperation in the establishment of networks for making meteorological, climatological, hydrological and geophysical observations, as well as the exchange, processing and standardization of related data, and assists technology transfer, training and research. It also fosters collaboration between the National Meteorological and Hydrological Services of its Members and furthers the application of meteorology to public weather services, agriculture, aviation, shipping, the environment, water issues and the mitigation of the impacts of natural disasters.

n the case of weather-related hazards, WMO's programs provide vital information for the advance warnings that save lives and reduce damage to property and the environment. WMO also contributes to reducing the impacts of human-induced disasters, such as those associated with chemical and nuclear accidents, forest fire and volcanic ash.

WMO plays a leading role in international efforts to monitor and protect the environment through its Programs. In collaboration with other UN agencies and the National Meteorological and Hydrological Services, WMO supports the implementation of several environmental conventions and provides advice and assessments to governments on related matters.

Fuel Producers

If the future of fuel producers and aviation continues as the past, the relationship will remain volatile. While fuel production and consumption involve an unlimited number of issues, two foreseeable challenges lie ahead: foreign supply and alternative fuels.

Iran recently threaten to close the Straight of Hormuz, disrupting 20% of the worlds oil supply. While the relationship between the Middle East and consuming nations of the west is very rocky, aviation consumers find themselves caught in the middle while market prices whip up and down to reflect perceived reality. Additionally, a further issue regarding the supply of Middle East oil is the actual number of reserves remaining. Mathew Simmons, author of Twilight in the Desert, has raised the awareness of unreliable Middle East oil reserves through his study of reserve decline rates. Stressed foreign relationships and unknown supply sources will continue to cause a turbulent environment for fuel producers and consumers.

Alternative fuels become more attractive as the price of crude increases. Major petroleum producers already have alternative fuel business units seeking to profit from this growing market. The time when petroleum consumption is no longer the majority of the market remains in the distant, but fuel producers must anticipate it. The consumer market, including aviation, remains highly dependent on petroleum products.

The Development of Aviation in Africa

The continuous growth of African nations and emergence of a strong economy in various African countries necessitates the establishment and development of national air carriers. There are a number of major airlines that have already been operating for the past few decades such as Egypt Air, Ethiopian Airlines, and South African Air Lines. Nevertheless, the continent still requires major infrastructure development and regulatory reform that would support the significant growth in airline traffic. The development of a unified Civil Aviation Authority that would cater for the entire continent is viewed as an essential and strategic approach towards enhancing their aviation industry.

The Development of the Aviation Sector in Asia

Despite economic turmoil across the globe, aviation in Asian nations experienced a steady growth. Traffic grew with a steady rate of 8% throughout 2010 and is only expected to increase throughout the coming years. This growth is further supported by the openings of new airports in the Far East region such as in Osaka, Hong Kong, and Bangkok. A key progression in the manufacturing arena in Asia is the Chinese commercial aircraft corporation which was established to cater for the significant traffic growth in China.

Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM)

Manufacturing and assembling an aircraft requires a tremendous amount of work by the manufacturer in terms of operations management (OP). OP is defined as the process of designing and improving a system that develops and delivers a product from the manufacturer to the customer. This process involves an entire network of OEM that strategically connects a series of business interactions in a complex chain with the final recipient of the product. This is a common activity in the aviation industry. Major manufacturers such as Airbus, Boeing, and Embraer are involved in OEM.


Airbus’ latest aircraft, the A-350, has received more than 570 orders from airliners across the globe. In order to meet the high demands and meet delivery deadlines, Michelin rubber has been awared the rights as the official supplier for Airbus OEM tyres for the A-350 XWB’s landing gear. This OEM authorization is not Airbus’ first transaction as they dealt with a numerous number of suppliers and manufacturers of aircraft parts during their A-380 venture.

Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC)

China’s air transportation fleet is expected to triple within the next 20 years. To meet the expected growth in air travel, Chinese carriers are expected to receive 13% of global aircraft orders. In an effort to reduce the nation’s dependency on Airbus and Boeing aircraft, COMAC was established in 2008 as Chinese aerospace manufacturer. Their first aircraft, ARJ21, is expected to carry more than 150 passengers. Pratt & Whitney is COMAC’s designated OEM for all propulsion requirements.


Embraer is South America’s largest aircraft manufacturer facility providing services to the global aviation market. Embraer has been able compete against the major players such as Boeing and attained a large share of the market for narrow body aircraft. Involved in a complex manufacturing chain, Embraer awarded Volvo Aero Services Coproration the rights as an official distribution center for Embraer OEM aircraft parts.

Build 2

Europe and the "Single European Sky"

Europe has several unique problems with respect to airspace and air traffic control. As depicted on the map below, Europe is comprised of several states, each of which have national sovereignty. Thus, each state owns the airspace above their national geographic boundaries, and has the responsibility for controlling air traffic above their land and within their airspace. If each state set up its own system for air traffic control, and even if they adhered to overall international standards, the operation in each state could differ significantly from that in another state. These differences would require aircraft to operate differently across state boundaries, and in many cases, jet transports flying enroute over Europe cross entire states within minutes.

Figure 2. Assessment of FUA Implementation by the ECAC States (Taken from Eurocontrol Web site:

Eurocontrol was created in the 1960s in part to unify all European airspace; however, the momentum was not in place to carry the notion through to fruition at that time for all aspects of the airspace. After 50 years of air traffic growth the resulting operational problems have created unfathomable delay and associated costs, causing a consensus for the grand European aviation scheme to finally go ahead. This time though there is a robust political structure in place, with the 27 Member States of the European Union in agreement, to support the vision through to its fruition and pragmatic enough to work to extend it beyond its supranational borders. Eurocontrol currently manages the upper altitude airspace over Europe to avoid congestion caused by multiple sovereignty rule differences that would need to be addressed by the aircraft in real time. What remains is to deal with the local sovereignty issues for aircraft departing from one country and then flying to another. .

By 2020, the "Single European Sky" should be completely implemented and the EU will have radically overhauled the way the airspace above Europe is organized and the way in which aircraft fly within it. Reducing the distance aircraft have to fly over Europe will inevitably result in fewer emissions, which is good for the environment and good for the cost effectiveness of the entire network and all of the aviation operators that occupy the airspace. One of the major remaining Single Sky challenges is to improve civil-military ATM coordination arrangements to reach beyond national boundaries in order to sufficiently match the Single European Sky environment, including future changes resulting from SESAR and the ATM Master Plan.

Chinese OEM COMAC and its new single-aisle jetliner

Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China, Ltd., or Comac, (Chinese: 中国商用飞机有限责任公司) is a Chinese government-owned aerospace manufacturer who plans to design and build large passenger aircraft with a capacity of over 150 passengers to reduce the country's dependency on Boeing and Airbus. The first jet to be marketed is the current ARJ21 and will be followed by the C919, planned for release in 2016.

The Comac C919 is a planned family of 168-190 seat narrow-body airliners and will be the largest commercial airliner designed and built in China since the defunct Shanghai Y-10. Its first flight is expected to take place in 2014, with deliveries scheduled for 2016. The C919 forms part of China's long-term goal to break Airbus and Boeing's duopoly, and will compete against Airbus A320neo and the Boeing 737 MAX. Construction of the nose section of the aircraft commenced on 2 September 2009. Comac applied for a type certificate for the aircraft from the Civil Aviation Authority of China on 28 October 2010. In November 2011, Comac announced the completion of the joint definition phase, marking the end of the preliminary design of the C919. The company followed through with its stated plan to cut the first metal for the aircraft in December 2011, with estimated completion of the detailed design phase in 2012.

Design and assembly of the aircraft will be done in Shanghai, using CFM jet engines and Western avionics. However, China has expressed its desire to eventually produce a locally made engine for the C919. The center wing box, outer wing box, wing panels, flaps and ailerons are planned to be built in Xi'an, China. The center fuselage sections are planned to be built in Hongdu, China. CFM International will supply a version of the LEAP-X engine, the LEAP-X1C, to power the aircraft.

Dimensions of the C919 are very similar to the Airbus A320, possibly to allow for a common pallet to be used. Its fuselage will be 13 feet wide, and 13 feet, 8 inches high, producing a cross-section of 139 square feet. The wingspan will be 110 feet, 3 inches, or 116 feet, 3 inches if winglets are included. Its cruise speed will be Mach 0.785 and it will have a maximum altitude of 39,800 feet. The standard version will have a range of 2,200nm, with the extended-range version able to fly 3,000nm.

According to a film shown by Comac at the 2010 Zhuhai Airshow, the company plans to build six different models of the aircraft: a base passenger aircraft with 168 seats, as well as stretched and shrunk passenger versions, business jet and freighter models, and a type designated only as "special."

At the 2010 Zhuhai Airshow, Comac announced orders for 55 C919 aircraft from six airlines, with an additional 45 options. The purchasing airlines or lessors were China Eastern Airlines, Air China, Hainan Airlines, China Southern Airlines, CDB Leasing Company, and GE Capital Aviation Services. GE Capital represents the only non-Chinese state-owned airline to have placed an order, although they are not disclosing for whom the order has been placed or if it is merely speculative. In February 2011 Ryanair announced discussions with Comac about the purchase of the aircraft. Ryanair will receive the last of the Boeing 737-800 from their current orders in 2012, and have no order placed thereafter. By this time they will have over 300 of this aircraft type. They withdrew from negotiations with Boeing and Airbus in 2009 as they stated that they were unhappy with the prices offered. In June 2011 Michael O'Leary of Ryanair announced the company had signed an agreement to help develop the aircraft. O'Leary indicated Ryanair would share its experience and expertise to assist Comac developing the new C919 commercial aircraft, with up to 200 seats, which would enable Ryanair to lower its costs. On 20 October 2011, Chinese leasing company ICBC Leasing announced an order for 45 C919s, as well as an agreement to be the launch customer for the aircraft.

Boeing, the current leader in China, wants to maintain a market share of a little more than 50 per cent over the next 20 years and Airbus hopes to increase its portion above 50 per cent. But Comac has set its sights on grabbing one-third of the domestic market in the next two decades. Initially at least, Comac’s ambitious goal will not bring it into direct competition with them, but the real prize in China is the market for larger single-aisle jets. Typically served by 150-seat aircraft, it will account for 71 per cent of total airplane deliveries in China by 2030, Boeing forecast. “The way this market works, they [Comac] will eat into everyone’s share,” said Ihssane Mounir, a senior vice-president with Boeing. “But we are not worried about competition. Competition is the mother of all improvements.”

Additionally, Comac released the second civil aviation market forecast report since its establishment, the COMAC Market Forecast Report (2011-2030), at the Aviation Expo/China 2011 on September 21st, 2011. This is the only global aviation market forecast report that is released both in Chinese and English at the same time for the aviation industry. The report shows that more than 30,900 new aircraft will be delivered at a total value of nearly 3.7 trillion dollars, based on 2011 catalog prices, in the next 20 years, where the most of aircraft to be delivered are single-aisle jets. It also shows that the Global Revenue Passenger Kilometres (RPK) will increase at an average annual rate of 4.9% in the next 20 years. By 2030, the global air passenger demand will grow 250%, and the global passenger aircraft fleet will reach nearly 36,000, more than doubling the existing aircraft fleet (17,600). In the next 20 years, about three quarters of the existing fleet, i.e. 12,700 aircraft will be out of business passenger services, and will be converted into business aircraft, cargo aircraft and different models for other purposes or permanently retired. In addition, more than 18,200 newly added passenger aircraft will be required by the global market.

With an emphasis on research of China market, the report points out that about 4,700 new aircraft will be delivered to China airlines with the market value of more than 500 billion dollars in the next 20 years. By 2030, the proportion of China market will increase from the current 9% to 15% in the global passenger aircraft fleet. Were Comac to capture only a moderate percentage of the forecast Chinese market its fortunes will be assured.

Indian OEMs (Still awaiting additional input)

India is often viewed as a nation of two sides. One side contains the extravagant infrastructure where the rich and powerful industrialists live and the other side is the over populated slums where millions of poor Indians live. While these two sides paint distinctive images, they both have a common interest. Each side provides the other with a necessity. The slums provide the industrialists with the cheap labor that pays less than minimum wage (Pulling every lever, 2012). That is the basic concept that drives the economy of 1.2 billion people.

The production of any product is a complex process that involves a long chain of suppliers and manufacturers. Managing such operations focuses on the production and delivery of the product. Thus, an entire network is developed that would ensure operational management. This network often contains a number of original equipment manufacturers (OEM) that provide tactical strategies for operational planning and control of the product in the long run (Chase, Jacobs, & Aquilano, 2006).

Besides India’s low production cost that makes it a strategic OEM global partner, the country is rich in talented man power. Billions of dollars are outsourced to India on an annual basis (Ram, 2010). Harmonization of U.S. based organizations with offshore Indian partners is an important strategy to bolster Western economies at affordable budgets (Ram, 2010).

Two of the most outsourced services are consultancy and technology services (Giridharadas, 2007). In order to compete with market challenges and upcoming industry competitors, Indian companies are establishing outsourcing offices in North America and Europe. These foreign outsourcing branches are based in less developed regions that offer Indian establishments the joy of affordable expenses (Giridharadas, 2007).

Since India has a good grip of Western industrial markets, it has the luxury to offer more services that directly connects it to manufacturers where they actively interact with supply and demand. This approach boosts the Indian economy by extending their market to international territories that eventual reflects the technological development back to their domestic regions. In fact, the Indian automotive industry has witnessed unprecedented developments and maturity that allows Indian automobile manufacturers such as Tata and Mahindra & Mahindra to enter international markets with competitive prices.

With the current developmental trend experienced by Indian markets, Western companies such as Siemens and Aerospace Systems depend on Indian Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM). India’s emerging markets are offering specialized services in manufacturing and design that blends with Western technology. Currently, the Indian aerospace industry is one of the fastest growing industries offering high end global services. Such advancements have attracted major civil and military aviation and aerospace vendors to Indian markets.

India’s economy is growing at a rate of 8% and is expected to have the third largest economy by 2050 (Kovaichelvan, 2007). This rate of economic growth is allowing India to become a major player in the aerospace industry. With their strong domestic manufacturing base, talented and well educated work force, and most importantly IT competitiveness, India has more to offer that outsourced jobs.

In terms of aircraft manufacturing, the Indian market has plenty to offer. In fact, the country is attracting major manufacturers such as Boeing to their arena. Mutual industrial interests offer significant advantages for Boeing as India is rich in motivated engineers and programmers. India is also benefiting from this industrial participation as it boosts it economy by offering thousands of jobs to the local people. On the other hand, while India is attracting foreign businesses, it is creating one of its own. Hindustan Aeronautics is one of India's leading aerospace firms that is gaining military and civil contracts across the Indian subcontinent. The combination of acceptance of foreign markets and the establishment of local firms in India is a strong strategical movement for India towards manufacturing their own aircraft as they develop their aerospace and aviation industry. Market recession is certainly not a concern for the Indian market. There is a potential growth in the Indian market as more foreign markets depend on their resources.

ICAO's Future Role

There are many overt and underlying forces that drive regulatory change within the aviation industry. The current role of the ICAO is to regulate the safety standards and operating regulations of the commercial aircraft industry. Currently the ICAO is mandated by the United Nations to regulate the safety of international civil aviation (Jiefang, 2008). The ICAO held its first regulatory conference in Chicago, IL in 1944 (Jiefang, 2008). Since then the face of aviation has changed dramatically. The convention aimed to establish framework procedures and responsibilities, technical and safety aspects of international flights. Many major factors and technological advances have driven many changes in the administration and policy of the organization. The ICAO morphed from a regulatory standards commission to an international politically funded and driven worldwide organization with a large focus on economics (Lyle, 1995).

The evolution of economic regulation came from the International Air Transit Agreement and Air Transport Agreement. These brought visibility to tariffs, taxation and fares of international civil aviation operations. Another evolution of ‍‍the‍‍ ICAO was the development of bilateral flight agreements and the regulation of service sectors which allowed airlines to form air route and currency conversion agreements (Nettey, 1997).

The introduction of advanced purchase exchange (APEX) in 1975 led to multinational tariff clauses and operational traffic route agreements. The period following the APEX saw increased futile tariffs and a lack of enthusiastic support from consumers and less active support roles for governments (Lyle, 1995). This caused the ICAO to increase involvement and regulatory authority within the industry.

The role of ICAO will undoubtedly change within the next twelve years. Based on the past, the commercial nature of the airline industry influences the majority of international regulations. Due to the economically driven nature of regulatory change; the ICAO will most likely develop into a global police force. The face of international aviation competition is constantly changing as airlines and manufacturers determine new ways to compete in the global market. The advancement of technology and emerging markets will require the ICAO to further and more heavily regulate not only the safety of production and operating standards but free market competition based on a country’s fare market trade value. The ICAO has to potential to become an international aviation economic police force.

‍‍IATA‍‍'s Future Role

‍‍‍While IATA identifies itself as an association of airlines companies, it is clearly assuming a more regulatory stance. IATA is effectively a powerful lobbying body for international air carriers, while ICAO is an inter-governmental organization which deals with regulatory aspects of national civil aviation oversight. ICAO makes recommendations and sets standards (although it has no enforcement powers) which are (generally) followed by national civil aviation authorities.

IATA’s published priorities (IATA, 2011) include the following when considering its regulatory prowess:

- Gain IATA Safety Operations Audit (IOSA) recognition by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA)

- Obtain one regulator’s acceptance of a pilot training initiative including multi-crew pilot licensing and evidence based training

- Prevent regulatory action on slots that would adversely affect the four cornerstones of the World Scheduling Guidelines

Vision 2050 represents IATA’s long term vision for the air transport industry. There is no questioning the criticality of the industry for the global economy, supporting 32 million jobs across the globe and $3.5 trillion in economic activity. Moreover, the industry is growing. By 2050, it is estimated that some 16 billion passengers and 400 million tons of freight will need to be flown yearly. However, with historical margins of 0.1% over the last 40 years, the industry faces enormous challenges, including financial sustainability. To prepare the industry for the future, IATA is working on an ambitious plan, Vision 2050, based on four pillars (IATA, 2012). The Vision 2050 pillars:

- Structuring for profitability

- Sufficient and efficient infrastructure

- Sustainable technology to power the industry

- Capability to meet the needs of the customer of the future

IATA, the aviation’s industry body, and ICAO, the UN agency responsible for air transport, have laid out broad plans for tackling emissions (Climate Group, 2009). This seemingly benign statement intrinsically represents the fundamental posture IATA maintains in their self-perception. It seems that IATA will evolve as a more regulatory agency similar to ICAO or any national aviation regulatory agency. Whilst IATA, like ICAO, possesses no real estate of its own, its wealth is in its membership and its membership’s commitment to IATA’s strength in the international aviation industry. Though IATA as a governing body can only draw on its membership for its intrinsic strength, when agencies like the USA’s DOT endorses the value of IATA training and IATA’s DGR as prescribed with the CFR. This serves as an encouragement for IATA to grow, blossom, and embrace the esteemed position as the sole voice of regulatory power governing international aviation. Since IATA is comprised of some 240 airlines and 118 countries (IATA, 2011), this empowers it beyond the UN’s ICAO membership of 191 countries as of October 2011 (ICAO, 2011). Though the ICAO has real estate through its membership of UN nations, IATA possesses the wealth of power at the root, within the airlines who conduct the business everyday worldwide. This gives IATA greater strength than UN membership ever could. The strength of commerce wins over the strength of diplomacy, again. Surely, as the global economy will necessarily grow stronger than any one country or small collection of countries, global business partnerships similar to IATA will embody more global strength and regulatory authority. Though the IATA cartel is second only to the OPEC cartel, its reach has greater diversity and subscription. This truly gives it its global strength and authority, beyond simple real estate.

Will Embraer enter the wide-body market for aircraft in the future?

Embraer predicts a 5.2% annual growth for air transport through the year 2030. They expect this will create demand for 7,000 new aircraft in the 61 to 120-seat capacity segment out of a total 31,435 new aircraft (Embraer, 2011). Table 1 provides a detailed breakdown of Embraer predictions.

Table 1

Embraer Market Forecasts by Segment and Year, Small Jets


Note: From Embraer global market forecast 2011-2030, p. 8.

Embraer also includes a forecast of narrow and wide-body jets: aircraft with capacity beyond 120 seats. This forecast is shown in Table 2 and is nearly three times the demand of the under 120-seat market (Embraer, 2011).

Table 2

Embraer Market Forecasts by Segment and Year, Narrow and Wide-Body Jets


Note: From Embraer global market forecast 2011-2030, p. 9.

Nothing in the Embraer report cited suggests the manufacturer will enter the narrow or wide-body market. According to a January 23, 2013 Aviation Week & Space Technology report, while Embraer had considered the possible development of a 130-160 seat airliner to compete with the A320 and 737 aircraft, they abandoned the idea (Jaworowski, 2012).

Given the literature, there is no information to support Embraer’s entry into the above 120-seat market. However, given Embraer seems to have the technical skill to produce aircraft and being the company considered larger aircraft in the past, it seems sensible to conclude that if economic growth and aviation demand outpace forecasts, Embraer could enter this market (personal conjecture).

Of international airlines, international alliances and national borders

Relationships between airlines can usually be characterized as one of three forms: ordinary, tactical and strategic (Fan et al., 2001). Ordinary cooperation is found where one airline contracts certain functions to another such as an environment where an airline has minimal operations at an airport. The airline with few operations contracts to a carrier with facilities at the airport to service/turn the flight. Tactical relationships are developed when two airlines cross-sell capacity on certain routes (Fan et al., 2001). The third, strongest form of relationships between airlines, are strategic alliances. Strategic alliances are characterized by network-wide cooperation consisting of reciprocal frequent flyer program recognition, shared lounges, extensive code-sharing, coordinated schedule and fare planning to deliver seamless travel for passengers across the entire network (Fan et al., 2001).

The forces affecting airline consolidation can be summarized as (Fan, Vigeant-Langlois, Geissler, Bosler, Wilmking , 2001):
  • Increased globalization
  • Increased intra-regional interaction
  • Economic incentives
  • Pace of liberalization
  • Anti-trust

As globalization continues there is a continued need for international and intercontinental travel (Fan et al., 2001). Strategic alliances where passengers can travel seamlessly between carries will be more valuable to passengers than travel with unaffiliated airlines. This level of service is very useful for frequent business travelers. However as globalization continues, there remains a need for increased regional identity (Fan et al., 2001). A strategic alliance between an international carrier and a local carrier can be valuable for both parties and the customer. The customer feels comfortable by purchasing travel on a local business while enjoying the benefits of an international company. This arrangement between carriers can be classified as “glocalisation”, where the airline is able to “think globally and act locally”.

A large force in driving consolidation is the economic benefits. Economic benefits can be realized through increased (density) revenue while enjoying lower unit costs (Fan et al., 2001). Mergers and acquisitions are a much faster method of creating a larger network than organic growth (Fan et al., 2001).

As the liberalization of the global airline industry continues so will the pace of consilidation (Fan et al., 2001). Two restrictions still remain that prohibit completely liberalizing the international air transportation market: first, the granting of air traffic rights to specific carriers is usually based on carrier country of ownership and secondly, foreign ownership limitations for international airlines. (Fan et al., 2001).

Anti-trust concerns remain an opposing force to airline consolidation. As consolidation continues and the benefits realized increase a desire for further mergers, regulation may veto all further strategic alliances (Fan et al., 2001).

While airlines are able to provide a “seamless” travel experience for passengers, regulation issues regarding anti-trust and security will limit consolidation at some level. Airline consolidation into global entities over the next 20 years will only be attempted if a business case exists. As many factors influence this type of decision it is impossible to predict where and how these alliances will develop. There are many benefits from a global entity, but becoming too large can have negative affect if the local touch is lost.

The future of Aviation and Aviation Infrastructure in Africa

Air transport has grown strongly in Africa in recent years. Overall, international air traffic to and from the continent has been growing at about 6 percent a year over the last decade, while domestic traffic has been growing at 12 percent, driven largely by an explosion of activity in Nigeria. In southern and eastern Africa, air traffic is growing strongly around hubs in Johannesburg, Addis Ababa, and Nairobi.

But air transport in Africa is expensive, connections are patchy, and safety is a problem. Landing charges are high due to the absence of support from concessions enjoyed in many parts of the world. Operating costs have soared with fuel prices, choking off air connections in many countries. Despite the overall growth in traffic, the number of city pairs served in Sub-Saharan Africa dropped by 229 between 2001 and 2007 as routes were consolidated, spelling a large reduction in air connectivity for many smaller countries. Excluding South Africa, Nigeria, and Mozambique, there was an average annual decline of 1 percent a year and a loss of 137 routes between 2004 and 2007.

Air safety is a significant issue aw well. More than one-fifth of the world’s air accidents occurred in Africa in 2004, whereas the continent accounted for just 4.5 percent of all flights. In 2006, African carriers lost 4.31 aircraft per million departures, compared with 0.65 worldwide. Some commentators have attributed this poor record to the use of old/or inferior aircraft and outdated air traffic control systems but in last few years fleets have undergone extensive renewal. Much more significant is the fact that so many aircraft are flown by small, poorly regulated fringe carriers. Their pilots are poorly trained and regularly work long hours in a dangerous operating environment—a formula for pilot error. Several international organizations have identified poor regulatory oversight as the top threat to safety in Africa, followed by inadequate safety management. All regions of Africa perform worse than the world average in all the critical elements of safety implementation—in most cases by a factor of two. These deficiencies are highly correlated with accident rates, suggesting that institutional failings explain much of the poor African accident record. Therefore, governmental policies to promote air safety in Africa can play a role in the recovery. Policy challenges include strengthening regulatory oversight and achieving full liberalization of the air transport sector.

Where physical infrastructure is concerned, while the number of airports is stable and enough runways exist to handle traffic, there is some evidence of inadequate air traffic control (except in South Africa and Kenya). Addis Ababa, for example, uses no civilian radar, forcing extra distance and time separations between aircraft. Even where the equipment exists, radar procedures (and radar separations) are not always implemented. There are areas in Africa where aircraft can fly for more than an hour and not be able to make contact with the ground. But only further investment can improve this situation and while the revenues from airports and air traffic are probably high enough to finance the necessary investments, the sector does not capture them. Africa's infrastructure will continue to suffer until the political and organizational issues holding it back are dealt with.

The future of Aviation and Aviation Infrastructure in South America

While much of the world has been caught in the economic malaise of recent years, the economy of the Caribbean and Latin America seems to have enjoyed a degree of isolation from this phenomenon, attracting the attention of the major foreign airlines which service the region to the point where the region has become central to the growth plans of those airlines (Kingsley-Jones, 2011). The potential for the growth of commercial traffic in the region is strong enough that Delta Air Lines created a new Latin American and Caribbean division as recently as last year (Kingsley-Jones, 2011). But foreign airlines aren’t alone in their focus on the region. Latin America’s own carriers posted healthy growth in the third quarter of 2011 and most are going into 2012 with ambitious plans to grow both capacity and route structure well into double digit percentages (Yeo, 2011). Cargo carriers will also enjoy an increase in business in the Latin American region. From a low of 1.1 million tons of air cargo transported between Latin American and North America in 2009, the cargo market between the two regions is predicted to grow at a rate of 5.7% annually through 2029 (Boeing, 2010). The cargo carriage rate is slated to grow between Latin American and Europe as well with a predicted annual growth rate of 5.6% over the same time period (Boeing, 2010).

But while the potential for growth in the region is encouraging, the region’s safety record isn’t so positive. Flight Safety Foundation statistics show Latin America and Caribbean states have the third highest accident rate after Africa and Asia with a rate of 3.2 hull-loss accidents per million as compared to the worldwide average of 1.03 and an average of less than 1 in North America, Europe and Oceania (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation, 2009). So if the region’s predicted growth in air traffic is to be routed safely, its airspace infrastructure will have to be improved to facilitate that growth. Fortunately, work is underway to do just that.

The International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) South American (SAM) regional office in Lima, Peru is focused on helping states achieve high standards of navigation service provision and established the Regional Aviation Safety Group in the first half of 2008 to help states implement the ICAO Global Aviation Safety Plan (GASP) (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation, 2009). SAM leads regional initiatives to improve the air traffic system route network across the region which includes a South American Implementation Group (SAMIG) which meets twice yearly to coordinate the implementation of initiatives like performance based navigation (PBN) and the automation of air traffic management (ATM) in the network (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation, 2009).

The US Federal Aviation Administration is also involved in South American, working with Chile to implement ADS-B and Local Area Augmentation Systems (LAAS) at 12 Chilean airports and working extensively with Brazil to develop and implement Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) technologies and procedures (Krakowski, 2010). The FAA is committed to continuing its cooperation with Brazil as the country transitions to satellite and aircraft performance-based navigation technologies and procedures (Krakowski, 2010).

Of all South American Nations, Brazil has been the most aggressive in implementing a modern air traffic management system. Activated in 2006, Brazil’s Air Navigation Management Centre (CGNA) is a central unit that monitors air traffic service on a 24 hour basis and responds dynamically to phenomena like adverse meteorological conditions, degradation of the airport infrastructure or similar events that require traffic flow to be restructured in real time (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation, 2011b). The unit makes adjustments to ensure minimum disruption to day to day operations using the structure and human resources available and includes permanent representatives of all the airlines as well as the Brazilian National Agency of Civil Aviation (ANAC) and airport representatives who collaborate in the decision making (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation, 2011b).

Brazil also has several other initiates that have already been achieved based on the identification of operational requirements, availability of appropriate technology and allocation of resources, including:

  • Accomplishment of the Automatic Dependent Surveillance by Contract (ADS-C) established at the Atlantic Area Control Center (ACC-AO) in Recife to more effectively route transcontinental air traffic flow over the Atlantic Ocean;
  • Implementation of Performance Based Navigation (PBN) in some Brazilian terminal areas like Recife and Brasilia; and
  • Implementation with the start of initial tests of the Ground Based Augmentation Systems (GBAS) at Rio de Janeiro International Airport. (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation, 2011a).

Brazil’s focus on the establishment of PBN routes will reach a milestone in March of this year when the Brazilian Department of Airspace Control (DECEA) will open a new structure of routes, over the center-south of Brazil (an imaginary polygon whose vertices bond five Brazilian cities: São Paulo, Brasilia, Belo Horizonte, Vitória and Rio de Janeiro), an enterprise aimed at increasing the efficiency of existing routes in this area in order to match them to future PBN operations scheduled for the following year (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation, 2012). However, Brazil’s biggest challenge where PBN routes are concerned will be the implementation of PBN on the routes to and from the busiest air terminals of the country, Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro by its goal of 2013 (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation, 2012).

Along with Brazil, Chile and Columbia are also investing in the long-term modernization of their ATM programs but progress for the entire South American region will continue to be hampered by its fragmented structure and small number of joint projects (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation, 2009). If Latin America is to improve its safety record, and go some way to meeting the ICAO objectives to optimize its ATM route network, there needs to be stronger cooperation between all South American states (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation, 2009).


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