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198th IATA Board of Governors

The 198th IATA Board of Governors meeting took place in Montreal on 6 December. The following is a summary of the main items addressed by the Board.

Environment

The Board congratulated the IATA team on the positive outcome from the ICAO 38th Assembly, including the adoption of a decision by States to develop a global MBM.

It noted the various work streams that IATA will be engaged in over the next three years, with ICAO, regional intergovernmental agencies and individual States, to build support and momentum towards the adoption of a global MBM by ICAO in 2016.

Furthermore, the Board asked airlines to engage proactively with their governments, in conjunction with airlines and their regional associations, to apply pressure on EU member States to resist unilateral imposition of the ETS on an airspace basis.

The Board also supported IATA’s work on biofuel commercialization and airline fuel data reporting.

Managing Your Money

The performance of IATA overall financial settlement systems processed 324b $ from January to October 2013, which represents an increase of 4.7% vs. 2012.

The 2014 Board target includes a key performance indicator of 99.96% for on time settlement of the IATA Settlement Systems (ISS), as well as unrecorded debt below 0.025% over total sales.

The SISS program, which consolidates operations under the umbrella of one organization, one process and one set of tools, achieved the 2013 Board target, with the migration of all operations worldwide into five regional hubs.

IATA continues its initiatives to lower ISS unit fees for airlines until 2017, representing a 27% reduction in average total unit fees from 2010.

Finally, the Board agreed that IATA develops a detailed roadmap for the New Generation of ISS. It will aim at increasing ISS market relevance. While IATA has managed to build a robust system, modernization is required to improve further the overall quality, security, and integrity of a complex, over 40 years old, global ISS system.

New Distribution Capability & StB

The NDC development is in a design phase: groups are working on the definition of the technical standard and trials are testing the first NDC messages. In 2015-2016 IATA will support the deployment of the standard, which is currently pending DOT approval.

Board members were encouraged to participate in 2014 NDC trials and also to promote the benefits of NDC to top industry partner contacts.

The Simplifying the Business 2013 white paper outlined some additional strategic opportunities:

  • Simplify order-to-cash: opportunity to enable instant revenue recognition of the order
  • No-more check-in: opportunity to integrate check-in steps into the customer order
  • Customer identifier: opportunity to make the journey consistent and predictable
  • Customer travel data exchange: opportunity to enhance customer service

IATA will further explore these strategic opportunities and assess the need for new technical standards and infrastructure. The findings will be shared with the air travel industry in the next StB white paper (pdf) and at the 2014 World Passenger Symposium.

Passenger Rights: next steps

The Board asked IATA to continue pressing for coordinated, reasonable approaches to consumer protection regulations in 2014.

At the global level, IATA will attempt to change the debate from a defensive posture for airlines to a proactive one, putting consumer protection in the broader context of safety, connectivity and choice.

IATA will also work to seek global convergence and compatibility among existing passenger rights regimes through ICAO policy guidance, which is consistent with the industry principles adopted at the 2013 AGM.

The continued support of IATA members is critical. The incentive is clear: factoring in passenger growth figures and assuming that passenger rights regimes grow to cover 70% of passengers in 5 years as opposed to 50% today, the liability airlines face could nearly triple by 2017.

Supervising IATA’s activities

The IATA budget for 2014 and the audit strategy for 2014-2016 were approved, as well as the Audit plan. 

The Board was satisfied with IATA’s performance in 2013 against the Industry Priorities. It further approved a set of priorities for IATA’s management team for 2014, which should be seen in the context of a three-year planning cycle.

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