Saturday, January 15, 2011

South East Asia Targeted As Growth Area For Air Freight By IATA

Vietnam Doing Well But Must Improve to Stay Ahead
Shipping News Feature

VIETNAM – As cargo levels rise and fall with the normal ebb and flow of world imports and exports it has always been the case that those involved with the logistics of an ever changing scenario move to ensure they are involved in setting up reliable freight links with the new and expanding trade areas. With the current visit of International Air Transport Association (IATA) Director General and CEO Giovanni Bisignani to South East Asia the organisation has been quick to point out the opportunities arising for shipping groups looking to become involved in the Vietnamese market.

During his meetings with Vietnam Airlines, the Southern Airport Corporation and Vietnam Air Traffic Management (VATM) a division of the Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam, Mr Bisignani said:

“The future for Vietnamese aviation is bright. By 2014, Vietnam is projected to be the world’s 3rd fastest growing market for international passengers and freight, and the 2nd fastest for domestic passengers. But it is a future that cannot be taken for granted. Vietnamese aviation must be built and supported by sound policies that take into account that this is a dynamic industry where change is the only constant.”

The IATA boss believes there are three key areas which need attention to ensure that the country copes with the rapid expansion of trade he foresees. He praised VATM, which recently succeeded Vietnam Air Navigation Services Corporation (VANSCORP) as the country’s air navigation provider but said he felt there was a need for an upgrade to satellite based navigational systems and performance based navigation which improves landing technology.

Mr Bisignani said he recognised the Vietnamese governments commitment to support the growth of aviation with the implementation of such schemes as the three year discount to airports but said more effort would be required to ensure costs were kept down to promote growth. He additionally felt that new paperless manifest systems would be crucial to maximise efficiency in the industry concluding:

“Improving efficiency will be critical in maintaining Vietnam’s competitiveness. IATA e-freight is one of the Simplifying the Business projects that improves service by taking paper out of the air cargo supply chain, and will generate $4.9 billion in annual savings. IATA, Vietnam Airlines and freight forwarders are looking to implement e-freight in Vietnam. But we need the government to ratify the Montreal Convention 99 so that e-freight can be a reality and deliver savings for the industry.”