IATA’s cooperation with the Nigerian Government to enhance Safety in Africa
While Africa continues to suffer the world’s worst accident rate at 7.41 per million sectors, the story for Nigeria has been quite different. There has been no fatal accident involving commercial aviation over the last four years. Yet only six years ago Nigeria was among the continent's top in terms of high accident statistics. One reason for the improvement is probably that in 2007, Nigeria adopted what it termed voluntary/compulsory stance on IOSA for all its operators.
In August 2011, following a meeting between IATA and the Nigerian Authorities, the Minister of Aviation decided to issue a directive to mandate the IOSA standard to all Nigerian carriers operating internationally. IATA believes this development will further enhance safety not only in Nigeria but over the entire continent.
During the same meeting the Nigerian Authorities have ensured their country became one of the first to endorse the Statement of Principles for IATA’s proposed Checkpoint of the Future.
IATA’s Pacific Project
Two years ago IATA developed the Pacific Project with the objective of enabling user preferred routes as the primary means of navigation for flights operating between North America and Asia.
The Pacific Project, which has the potential of delivering the greatest benefit on a per flight basis of any air traffic management (ATM) project with an estimated annual reduction in CO2 emissions of at least 750 million kg, was endorsed by ICAO in Oct 2010. ICAO adopted the Pacific Project into the work program of the Cross Polar Working Group (CPWG).
The first technical meeting of Pacific Project, held in St. Petersburg in June 2011, included representatives from China, Canada, Japan, Russian Federation and the United States. The team endorsed the project objectives and agreed the initial work program to undertake a gap analysis of current capabilities and model-preferred unconstrained flows. IATA and the US Federal Aviation Administration are leading the initial work with first results to be reported to CPWG/12 to be hosted by IATA North Asia in December 2011.
There is strong commitment and cooperation between the various states and airlines involved has been extremely positive.
IATA calls for leadership in Seamless Asian Skies
Asia Pacific, the fastest growing aviation market globally, lacks a coordinated program to deliver interoperable and seamless air traffic management services across the region.
The first Seamless ATM meetings was held on 15-17 August in Bangkok. It gave IATA the opportunity to call for leadership from the region and the establishment of a body to develop the principles of Seamless ATM across Asia Pacific.
There was general consensus to establish a planning group, which resulted on the establishment of the Asia-Pacific Seamless ATM Planning Group (APSAPG). This group will review existing guidance (including NextGen and SESAR), develop the Asia-Pacific principles for Seamless ATM, map the traffic flows (gate to gate) against the defined capabilities, utilize the ICAO Block upgrades as a mechanism top progress technologies and establish a work plan across the region.
IATA’s Project Philippines to improve Air Traffic Control Quality and Reliability
IATA established “Project Philippines” to address systemic infrastructure reliability and Air Traffic Control (ATC) service quality issues. One of the project initiatives is the Operational Safety and Capacity Enhancement (OSCET) Team for Ninoy Aquino International Airport. The OSCET team focus is to develop mitigation strategies to address safety hazards and to explore solutions to curb the increasing delays due to traffic congestion.
As part of the project plan to improve air traffic control service quality and reliability, IATA sponsored three air traffic services training courses to Philippine Air traffic controllers in July and August. Some 25 students attended each course. The courses covered ATC Phraseology, ATC Refresher Training, and Communication, Navigation and Surveillance/Air Traffic Management airspace master planning.
Middle East and North Africa
IATA to co-host the 2nd Middle East ANSPs, Airspace Users, & Stakeholder Conference
Pursuant to IATA’s involvement with the Civil Air Navigation Services Organization (CANSO) for the establishment in the Middle East and North Africa Region of a regional guidance and mechanism to enhance users-stakeholders engagement (MEAUSE), IATA is co-hosting with CANSO in Amman (Jordan) on 21-22 November, the second Middle East Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSPs), Airspace Users, & Stakeholder Conference. Furthermore, IATA supports the CANSO initiative for a Middle East Regional Airspace Review (MIDRAR).
This involvement is part of IATA’s initiative to enhance engagement and consultation between airlines and ANSPs. The cooperation with CANSO is also a step forward for various future collaborations in the Middle East and North Africa region including ANSPs’ involvement and the launch of fuel efficiency programs.
New International Air Route in China
At the suggestion of IATA, a new air route W129 (Zhengzhou-OBLIK) was opened on 25 August within China for international flights. The new route enables a 10 nautical miles cut on the routes linking Europe with Guangzhou and Hong Kong.
IATA plays key role in full global conversion to RVSM standard
Activity on the Reduced Vertical Separation Minimum (RVSM) implementation in RCIS region started in 2009 with the establishment of the RVSM Implementation Task Force and two working groups (WGs) – the Air Traffic Management WG and the Safety Monitoring WG and the development of the Master Plan.
At the last Task Force meeting in Paris all countries confirmed their readiness for implementation of RVSM on the planned date.
After years of work by IATA and other key players on RVSM the Russian Federation together with Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Mongolia, the Kyrgyz Republic, Kazakhstan and Afghanistan is going to implement RVSM on 17 November. From that day, the entire world will be using RVSM ICAO standard.
Although the full global conversion to RVSM Feet Flight Level Allocation Scheme (FLAS) is a great step towards the creation of seamless airspace environment, IATA still has a lot of challenges in the region.
One of them logically out coming from Feet FLAS is retaining of the metric measurement below the transition level together with QFE approach (QFE is a Q code used by pilots and air traffic control that refers to atmospheric pressure and altimeter settings) and landing procedures.
IATA, Russian ANSPs and airlines have considerably discussed this issue with the Russian Federal Air Transport Agency, arguing that transition from one measurement unit to another during the same flight would be worse than using just metric measurement. It also increases human error risks.
During the last meeting in Paris, this issue was raised again. It was agreed to establish a special work group under the ICAO umbrella. The Russian regulatory authorities will also work on it. The CIS countries have not determined their position yet but are expected to follow the Russian initiatives.