FOCUS ON ATM'S BIGGER PICTURE, IATA TELLS MIDDLE EAST
Greater air traffic management efficiency is the main challenge facing the Middle East's aviation industry, according to the out-going IATA Director General and CEO, Tony Tyler.
Addressing the IATA Middle East Aviation Day in Abu Dhabi, Tyler told delegates that tremendous investment has transformed regional air connectivity, particularly in the Gulf but the growth also brought challenges.
“Chief among these at the moment is co-operation to bring greater efficiency to air traffic management,” he said. “The challenge is to look beyond merely national issues and focus on an even bigger picture – the strategic development of aviation across the Middle East.”
Tyler said “states must commit” to helping the Middle East ATM Enhancement Programme (MAEP), succeed. MAEP is a strategic initiative formed to co-ordinate policy, operational and technological change in ensuring a seamless ATM regional structure. “All the stakeholders must work together to ease the airspace congestion and reduce flight delays in the Gulf.”
Tyler said the key challenge is to increase the overall efficiency of the region’s ATM system through improved airspace design and organisation. “Moreover, individual developments in ATM and airspace capacity are not enough: harmonisation, integration and collaboration among aviation stakeholders is essential to realise the full potential of national projects.”
According to IATA’s latest passenger forecast, the Middle East will continue to be one of the fastest growing regions in terms of passenger traffic, expanding 4.6% per year, on average, to 2034.