[Updated July 30 with new information]
Air Transport and Cargo
News and issues relating to international air transport and cargo carriers, national airlines and regional airlines, including aircraft, engines, personnel, acquisitions, accidents, safety, security and training.
Airbus Group CEO Tom Enders told investment analysts on Wednesday that he doesn’t see an impending end to the upward cycle in demand for airliners despite the spate of order cancellations Airbus’s civil division suffered during the first half of the year.
Boeing’s 2014 commercial pilot and mechanic demand forecast, released today, reflects a 7-percent increase in pilot demand over last year’s projections and a 5-percent increase in the outlook for mechanics. In all, the world’s aviation system will require 533,000 new commercial airlines pilots and 584,000 new commercial airline mechanics over the next 20 years, according to Boeing.
The International Civil Aviation Organization has agreed to establish a task force early next week to identify “gaps” in the system used by the airline industry to assess risk of flying over conflict zones.
The apparent lack of a cohesive international system for assessing threats in airspace over conflict zones has revealed itself again in differing conclusions reached by major Persian Gulf airlines about the dangers of flying over Iraq.
(Story first posted on July 25 was updated July 28 at 4:11 pm EDT)
Airbus is working hard to complete A350 flight testing, which it hopes to close by the end of next month in preparation for formal European Aviation Safety Agency airworthiness approval in September. Principal remaining work involves long-range flights now under way following a maximum-energy rejected take-off (MERTO) demonstration at Istres Air Force Base in France on July 19. By July 22, the five A350 test aircraft had logged more than 2,250 hours during about 540 flights involving more than 1,380 takeoff/landing cycles.
The European Cockpit Association (ECA) has called for “intense scrutiny” of the air transport industry’s assessment of risks and the principles of flying over conflict zones in the wake of the July 17 loss of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17.
India’s loss-making Jet Airways and its new 24-percent owner Etihad Airways are formulating plans for restructuring debt and fleet rationalization for enhancing a full-service branding. Jet, reporting $689 million in declared losses last year, expects to show profits by 2017, founder and chairman Naresh Goyal said at a July 23 press conference in New Delhi.
The Air Algerie McDonnell Douglas MD-83 carrying 110 passengers and six crewmembers that had gone missing while en route from the West African nation of Burkina Faso to Algiers has reportedly crashed.
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