The Flight Safety Foundation will open an Asia Pacific Centre for Aviation Safety in Singapore.
The aim of the center is to help aviation ensure safe operations while the region’s airlines recover towards pre-pandemic levels.
Supported by the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS), the center will develop a region-specific work program to “meet the needs of regulators and industry”, taking on projects and studies to “to provide a deeper understanding of safety challenges and build capabilities in technology, data analytics and safety management processes,” according to an announcement by the Flight Safety Foundation on March 22, 2023.
S Iswaran, the Minister for Transport and Minister-in-Charge of Trade Relations, announced the opening of the center during the first Asia-Pacific Summit for Aviation Safety, which was organized by the CAAS and Flight Safety Foundation.
CAAS will also “fund the Centre to support the initial set-up and its activities for the first five years,” the organization clarified.
Throughout 2023, the center will work on three areas: the assessment of the region’s safe record, the safety culture leadership, and pilot competencies and training capabilities in the Asia-Pacific region. More projects will be announced following discussions with regulators and other stakeholders in the region.
“Aviation safety must be a top priority of the Asia-Pacific region as air travel recovers to pre-pandemic levels. It requires close collaboration amongst regulators and industry across countries, given its cross-border nature,” stated Han Kok Juan, the Director-General of the CAAS.
According to the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA), airlines in the region carried a combined total of 105.4 million international passengers, compared to 17.4 million in 2021. By December 2022, international passengers were at 47.5% of pre-pandemic levels. In January 2023, AAPA noted that the region’s carriers saw 17.2 million international passengers on its aircraft, with the average load factor being 81.5%, “levels seen only before the onset of the pandemic”.
“Notwithstanding the challenges brought on by the global economic uncertainty, growth prospects for passenger markets look positive for the year ahead. The desire to travel remains strong, with latest forward booking trends pointing to sustained high demand,” said Director General of AAPA, Subhas Menon commenting on the January 2023 results.