June 2019 – 75th IATA Annual General Meeting, Seoul, Korea


President Sunil Kumar at 75th IATA AGM & WATs 1-3 June at Seoul, Korea
“Flying is freedom. And we can be proud that it is our business. Flying contributes to 15 of the 17 UN sustainable development goals,” said IATA Director General and CEO Alexandre de Juniac.
The 75th AGM of IATA was an event that is historic. UFTAA President Sunil Kumar was invited and registered as a Chief Delegate to this most prestigious event. This is his Fourth AGM attendance. A highly educative World Air Transport Summit (WATS) themed “The Vision for the Future” followed the AGM. Hosted by Korean Air and chaired by its Chairman Cho Won-tae, IATA AGM held for the first time in the Republic of Korea. The event attracted more than thousand top leaders from among IATA’s 290 member airlines in 120 Countries, their suppliers, governments, strategic partners, international organizations and the media. The event concluded with calls to make the industry sustainable amid a slew of challenges lying ahead and covered topics in the aviation industry from economic outlook to safety. It was dubbed that the aviation industry is equivalent of a United Nations gathering.

The AGM featured keynote addresses by Kim Hyun-mee, Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport of the Republic of Korea and Violeta Bulc, European Commissioner for Mobility and Transport. The South Korean Minister said “this year’s AGM would “be able to discover the vision for the future of the aviation industry and also share our extensive experiences between our countries and airlines, so that the whole aviation industry can make another leap forward.” The European Commissioner for Transport said that close cooperation between regulators and the industry could ensure a prosperous future for aviation by seeing to it that air carriers and other industry players maintained global standards and offered maximum safety for passengers.

At the 75th AGM, IATA passed these five resolutions…
a) Slots: The projected growth in aviation will be challenged by capacity shortages. There is a huge threat of “delays” and “millions of travellers” affected. Governments requested to urgently address capacity shortages. Endorsed a Statement of Objectives focusing on delivering consumer benefit, proving convenient schedules, ensuring transparency and non-discrimination in the process and using existing capacity to its full potential.
b) RFID for Baggage Tracking : To support the global deployment of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) for baggage tracking. Implementation of modern baggage messaging standards to more accurately track passengers’ baggage in real time across key points in the journey called for. Airlines to transition to bar-coded bag tags with RFID inlays and use RFID data alerts to enact processes with airports and ground handlers that prevent potential mishandlings.
c) One ID : A big dream come true… To accelerate the global implementation of the One ID initiative, which uses a single biometric identifier to move passengers through the airport, without the need for paper travel documents. This resolution calls for stakeholders — including airlines, airports and government authorities; to work together to promote and implement a paperless passenger process utilizing biometric recognition.
d) Disabled Passengers : An estimated one billion people live with disabilities worldwide. Airlines committed to ensuring that passengers with disabilities have access to safe, reliable and dignified travel, and called upon governments to use IATA’s core principles for accommodating passengers with disabilities. These principles aim to change the focus from disability to accessibility and inclusion by bringing the travel sector together with governments to harmonize regulations and provide the clarity and global consistency that passengers expect.
e) Environment : Governments requested to implement the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) as agreed through the UN’s International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). CORSIA will cap net CO2 emissions from international aviation at 2020 levels (carbon-neutral growth, or CNG). The AGM looked beyond CORSIA to the next climate action commitment—cutting net emissions to half 2005 levels by 2050. Airlines were urged to implement all available fuel efficiency measures and to participate fully in a long-term switchover to sustainable aviation fuels.
"All these resolutions are in favour of developing our industry. We're developing industry in a sustainable way." said Alexandre de Juniac, DG and CEO of IATA
Lufthansa Group CEO Carsten Spohr is elected as new Chairman of the Board of Governors (BoG), the policy review and decision-making body of the IATA.
Both the Gala evenings were impeccably hosted by Boeing & Air Bus. Air Bus celebrated its 50th Anniversary at the Gala Dinner, it hosted.
TravelSky is the third largest global distribution system (GDS) in the world, and has the world's largest Billing and Settlement Plan (BSP) data processing center hosted the Farewell Lunch.
Aviation is the Business of Freedom. ... The IATA Diversity & Inclusion Awards, sponsored by Qatar Airways, were presented to recognize and celebrate the great work that is being done to take the industry into the future.
The High Flyer Award presented to Fadimatou Noutchemo Simo, Founder and President, Young African Aviation Professional Association. Diversity & Inclusion Team was presented to Air New Zealand. The Inspirational Role Model award was presented to Christine Ourmières-Widener, CEO, Flybe

Some Key Facts shared at the IATA AGM

In 2019, Airlines estimated profit is $28 billion, as compared with $35.5 billion forecast in December last year. The average profit per passenger is $ 6.12.
3.2% is a modest net margin compared to Apple & Google.
Despite this year being the 10th consecutive year in the black for the airline industry, the IATA CEO said margins were being squeezed by the rising costs of labour, fuel and infrastructure, and that global trade was likely to continue to weaken as the US-China trade war intensified.
Capacity shortages pose a major threat to the projected growth in aviation traffic. Slots must be organized and capacities enhanced.
19.1 million minutes of en-route delays threatens capacity challenges. 36 years of wasted time.
PASSENGER’s ONE IDENTITY will revolutionize the way travel takes place today. One ID uses a single biometric identifier to move passengers through the Airport without the need for paper travel documents. It can even extend beyond flying … Hotels; Cruises etc.
Airline CEOs voiced concern on Boeing’s 737 Max, saying that restoring global trust should be the priority. Boeing’s 737 Max was grounded globally in March after fatal accidents in Ethiopia and Indonesia that killed all passengers on board both flights. IATA has stressed that it plans to organize a summit for airlines, regulators and Boeing in five to seven weeks to discuss putting the model back into service.
CNN’s Richard Quest moderated CEO insight panel, which continued as a hi-light of the WATS.

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