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Tuesday, September 13th, 2022

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Further staffing problems sees Schiphol Airport forced to further reduce flight numbers

In June and unable to deal with the rapid increase in passenger numbers, Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport decided that for the summer ahead it would cap passenger numbers to 70,000 a day, approximately 16% or 13,500 seats below capacity. Two of the principal areas where staff shortages were having the greatest impact were security and baggage handling.

Schiphol was not alone, and many airports had felt confident that increase in demand for air travel would increase slowly and this would allow sufficient time to recruit new staff to replace those who lost their jobs during the COVID pandemic and air travel shut down. Flag-carrying airline KLM was particularly hard hit, having had to cancel 20 flights to European destinations in a daily basis until August 28.

On Monday, September 12, airlines have been asked to further trim flight numbers by cancelling all flights from Schiphol between 4 p.m. and 11 p.m. local time. A statement issued by the airport stated that “After weeks of improvement, Schiphol did not expect to have to take these measures. Employees in the terminal are working as hard as they can to ensure that everyone can travel, but unfortunately there is a chance that travellers will miss their flight due to long waiting times.”

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Danya Trent becomes new leader for Lockheed Martin's Greenville, S.C. site

Lockheed Martin has released that Danya Trent, Vice President of Lockheed Martin Aeronautics’ F-16 programmes, will now also serve as site lead of the company’s Greenville, South Carolina facility. In this role, in addition to leading the overall F-16 product portfolio, Trent will be responsible for the strategic direction, performance and growth of the Greenville operation.   

As the global home of the F-16, the Greenville site continues to ramp up F-16 production and is planning to deliver the first Block 70 jet to Bahrain in the first half of 2023. The team also provides sustainment support to the F-16 platform, as well as other platforms, such as the Lockheed Martin C-130.

Throughout her 21-year career with Lockheed Martin, Trent has held various leadership roles, including Vice President of Lunar Exploration Campaigns, Vice President of Programme Management at Lockheed Martin Space and Director of the Integrated Fighter Group (IFG)’s portfolio in the Southwest Asia, Middle East and North Africa (SAMENA) region for Lockheed Martin Aeronautics.

BBN Cargo Airlines Holdings sets up air cargo operations in Jakarta, Indonesia

BBN Cargo Airlines Holdings, a global aviation company operating Icelandic cargo airlines Bluebird Nordic, is expanding its network and has opened a new AOC alongside its Icelandic airlines. The newly established cargo airlines BBN Airlines Indonesia has set up its operations in Jakarta, Indonesia on August 31, 2022.

As scheduled, BBN Airlines Indonesia will manage cargo operations in the Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, one of the busiest airports in the Southern Hemisphere. The growing demand for air cargo transportation services in the last decade is one of the main reasons for this business expansion.

Currently, the BBN Airlines Indonesia is in the process of getting the airline business license, which is planned to be ready this year and predicted to achieve the AOC (Aircraft Operator Certificate) in the second quarter of 2023.

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As African aviation traffic recovers at strong pace, Boeing forecasts demand for 1,010 new airplanes

Boeing estimates that intra-regional and domestic networks across the African content will grow with a robust 6,1% compound annual growth rate, driving twenty-year demand for 1,010 new airplanes by 2040 valued at US$176 billion. With Europe remaining the most prominent origin/destination for African carriers, overall African air traffic growth is forecasted at 5.2%, the third-highest among global regions. Boeing has provided the data as part of its 2022 Commercial Market Outlook (CMO), the company’s long-term assessment of global demand for commercial airplanes and services.

African aviation traffic has recovered at strong pace in 2022 with pent-up demand and economic growth driven by higher global commodity prices allowing African airlines to recover their flight operations to 80% of pre-pandemic levels. Africa’s above world average annual economic growth of 3.1%, combined with increasing rates of urbanization and a growing middle class population will continue to be the drivers for Africa’s long-term traffic demand, according to Boeing. Initiatives such as the African Continental Free Trade Area and Single African Air Transport Market are expected to further stimulate trade and intra-regional connectivity.

“African carriers are well-positioned to support inter-regional traffic growth and capture market share by offering services that efficiently connect passengers and enable commerce within the continent,” said Randy Heisey, Boeing managing director of Commercial Marketing for Middle East and Africa. “We forecast an increase in the average aircraft size and seats per aircraft for the African fleet, as mid-size, single aisles, like the Boeing 737 MAX, will be the most in demand for the continent.”

The 2022 Africa CMO also includes these projections through 2041:
  • Airlines in Africa will grow their fleets by 3.5% per year to accommodate passenger traffic growth of 5.2% annually, above the global average growth of 3.8%.
  • Single-aisle jets are expected to account for more than 70% of commercial deliveries, with 740 new planes mainly supporting domestic and inter-regional demand. In addition, African carriers are estimated to need 250 new wide-bodies, including passenger and cargo models, to support long-haul routes and air freight growth.
  • More than 80% of African jet deliveries are expected to serve fleet growth with more sustainable, fuel-efficient models such as the 737, 777X and 787 Dreamliner, with nearly one in five deliveries replacing older airplanes.
  • Estimated demand for aviation personnel will rise to 67,000 new professionals, including 20,000 pilots, 21,000 technicians and 26,000 cabin crew members.
  • Commercial services opportunities such as supply chain, manufacturing, repair and overhaul are valued at US$80 billion.
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New course for Africa to address IATA priority

AviAssist has announced the launch of a new product for Africa’s ground handling industry at Aviation Africa 2022. The new online course on Aeronautical Knowledge for Ground Handling will help address one of the main threats to safety that IATA has identified.

“We are privileged to have worked with AviAssist to develop this course”, explained, NAC2000 managing director Jonathan Lewis at Aviation AfricaNAC2000 is the only IATA (ISAGO) certified ground handler in Zambia. “It is difficult and expensive to continuously train new staff members at both operational and mid management levels. Many skilled employees have left the industry and are not coming back. Recruiting, training and accrediting new staff can take up to six months. So, it is critical that we retain current staff and find more efficient ways of on-boarding new personnel. This course takes away some of the pain for us of on-boarding new staff and will help us retain staff too”.

The blended learning course consists of curated videos that are watched on demand over a two-week period. That is combined with assessor led live sessions in which participants are assessed for their knowledge. It provides an appreciation of the risks and safety components related to the daily working environment at the airport. The course modules include human factors, dangerous goods, air side safety, container and pallet inspection and aircraft performance with weight and balance.

The course assists employers with an affordable induction training, motivates staff and gives them both an outline for further professional development opportunities. It was developed by industry experts from the Netherlands and Zambia and tested by new and experience ground handling staff in four African countries. The first intake of the course is scheduled for November 1.

Titan Aircraft Investments and Ethiopian Airlines sign long-term dry lease agreement for 767 freighter aircraft

Titan Aircraft Investments, the joint venture between Titan Aviation Holdings, Inc. and Bain Capital Credit, has announced the placement of three Boeing 767-300ER converted freighters on long-term dry leases with Ethiopian Airlines Group.

Ethiopian Airlines is expected to take delivery of the first of these aircraft later this month, with the second delivery planned for later this year and the third aircraft planned for 2023.

The addition of these three aircraft brings Titan Aircraft Investments’ freighter fleet to ten aircraft, five of which are Boeing 767 converted freighters.

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CDB Aviation completes deliveries of ten A320-200 aircraft to Indonesian carrier Super Air Jet

CDB Aviation, a wholly owned Irish subsidiary of China Development Bank Financial Leasing (CDB Leasing), has reported the delivery of the last of ten Airbus A320-200 aircraft to Indonesia’s newest low-cost airline, Super Air Jet (SAJ).

The aircraft were delivered to the carrier over a period of 18 months and are meant to support the development of Super Air Jet as a leading airline supporting the growth of domestic traffic in fast growing Indonesia as the region’s market continues to recover from the pandemic.

“SAJ’s growth prospects in Indonesia are very promising. Our team’s prerogative was to provide the most attractive financing terms and the right scale of leased aircraft to aptly support SAJ’s growth trajectory and low-unit cost operating model for the foreseeable future,” said Peter Goodman Chief Marketing Officer, CDB Aviation.

GE completes latest adaptive cycle engine tests

The U.S. Air Force and GE have successfully concluded testing on GE’s second XA100 adaptive cycle engine at the Air Force’s Arnold Engineering Development Complex (AEDC). With testing at AEDC completed, GE has accomplished the final major contract milestone of the Air Force’s Adaptive Engine Transition Programme (AETP), which began in 2016.

“This is the culmination of more than a decade of methodical risk reduction and testing GE has completed with the Air Force across three different adaptive cycle engine programmes,” said David Tweedie, GE Edison Works’ Vice President and General Manager for advanced Products. “The engine performance data we gathered at AEDC continued to show the XA100’s transformational capability, while also demonstrating a return on substantial Air Force and taxpayer investment. We now stand ready to transition to an Engineering and Manufacturing Development programme and bring this engine to the field with the F-35 before the end of this decade.”
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