ACI ASIA-PACIFIC BOARD MEETING & REGIONAL ASSEMBLY HELD IN SINGAPORE
Hosted by Changi Airport Group, the 17th ACI Asia-Pacific Board Meeting & Regional Assembly held in Singapore from May 16-18, 2022, proved to be a productive and highly successful event, writes senior manager for media and communications, Sunil Subbaiah.
Though scaled down significantly and different from our usual annual gatherings, the event saw an overwhelming participation with a turnout of around 100 in-person attendees and 50+ virtual participants from across the time zones, representing members from well over 20 countries in Asia-Pacific and the Middle East.
This helped ACI Asia-Pacific achieve its objective – bringing together airport leaders, business partners and government authorities for a fruitful exchange in this first hybrid event.
The Assembly was officially opened by Seow Hiang Lee, CEO of Changi Airport Group and ACI Asia-Pacific director general, Stefano Baronci.
The Board also appointed four new Board members – Dato’ Iskandar Mizal Bin Mahmood, managing director of Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad; Kyung Wook Kim, president and CEO of Incheon International Airport Corporation; Cheok Kuan Kan, executive director of Macau International Airport Company Limited; and Hyeong Jung Yoon, president and CEO of Korea Airports Corporation.
“We are excited to have this group of individuals join the Board and bring in their unique talents, expertise and perspectives to further our vision to promote excellence in airport management and operations,” said Baronci.
“We are truly grateful to our outgoing president Seow Hiang Lee for his outstanding contributions over the course of the last four years. We look forward to working closely with our Board to further strengthen ACI Asia- Pacific’s programmes across the region.”
KNOWLEDGE EXCHANGE AT THE REGIONAL BOARD ASSEMBLY
As a result of severe air travel restrictions implemented by practically all countries around the world, the industry lost over 6.1 billion passengers in 2020 compared to the projected baseline (pre-COVID-19 forecast for 2020), representing a decline of 64.6% of global passenger traffic.
Most industry experts see digitalisation as a key enabler to not only handle the pandemic, but also the restart and recovery period once restrictions are lifted.
During the opening panel discussion of the ACI Asia- Pacific Regional Assembly, leaders from various airports and ACI World Business Partners shared their perspectives on success stories, lessons learnt from the COVID-19, the importance of sustainability, and opportunities to improve aeronautical revenues.
ACI Asia-Pacific director general, Stefano Baronci, moderated the Leaders Forum (pictured above), which featured SGK Kishore, executive director, GMR Hyderabad International Airport Limited; Seow Hiang Lee, CEO, Changi Airport Group and Emmanuel Menanteau, representing Cambodia Airports.
In the informative session, the leaders shared some thoughts on how the aviation industry, and specifically airports in Asia-Pacific and the Middle East, can continue to recover from the global pandemic and ultimately build back better.
DISCUSSION ON DECARBONISATION
Each airport’s decarbonisation journey is unique to their setting and circumstances, with some being further ahead in the process than others.
In this session, delegates heard from Videh Jaipuriar, CEO of Delhi International Airport Ltd, and Akihiko Tamura, president and CEO of Narita International Airport Corporation, about the decarbonisation journeys of their respective airports.
The CEOs also shared their views on green power resources and expanding sustainably through green financing and ESG.
The session was moderated by Ruud Ummels, managing director of To70, the European representative on ACI WBP Advisory Board. All three are pictured above.
DISCUSSION ON NON-AERONAUTICAL REVENUES, CONCESSION AGREEMENTS
The final panel session of the event (pictured above) was focused on non-aeronautical revenues and covered everything from the need to find new revenue streams to compensate for the decline in passenger volumes to whether it is time for airports to re-think the terms and conditions of their commercial contracts with concessionaires.
In the hot-seat were Peck Hoon Lim, Changi Airport Group’s executive vice president for commercial; Gerald Ong, regional business development director for the Plaza Premium Group; Marvin von Plato, CEO of Heinemann Asia Pacific Pte Ltd; and Nagy Abu Zeid, vice president of corporate planning for Oman Airports Management Company.
This session was moderated by ACI Asia-Pacific’s senior expert for economics and ESG, Ilia Lioutov.
KANSAI AIRPORTS TO HOST 18TH ACI ASIA-PACIFIC REGIONAL ASSEMBLY, CONFERENCE & EXHIBITION
Japan’s Kansai Airports will host the 18th ACI Asia-Pacific Regional Assembly, Conference & Exhibition in Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture, in 2023.
As the host of this assembly, Kansai Airports will promote meaningful discussions for the further development of the aviation eco-system and strive to maximise the appeal of the Kansai region, including Osaka, Kansai Expo 2025.
NEW RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME
ACI Asia-Pacific, ACI World and the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to conduct research and studies to develop and deliver training for aviation professionals.
The training will equip aviation professionals with new knowledge and skills to help them rebuild their respective aviation sectors, which have been badly hit by the COVID-19 pandemic in the last two years.
The signing of this MoU cements our strong working relationship with the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore and will help enhance aviation standards in the country. This partnership is vital to strengthen the existing programmes and will enhance collaboration on sustainability, aviation safety, security, and airport management.
Pictured above signing the MoU are ACI Asia-Pacific director general, Stefano Baronci; ACI World director general, Luis Felipe de Oliveira; and director general of CAAS, Han Kok Juan, observed by Singapore’s Minister of Transport, S. Iswaran.