The Czech capital Prague is set to host the third annual Cepa Expo conference and exhibition at a time when the pace of business aviation growth in Central and Eastern Europe continues to outstrip that in the West of the continent. The November 28 to 30 event is organized by the Central Europe Private Aviation Association (Cepa), which was formed in 2009 to promote the industry’s interests in countries such as Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Croatia, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Serbia, the Slovak Republic, Slovakia and Slovenia. The group is now expanding its representation into neighboring Belarus, Ukraine and Russia.
“Business aviation conferences can sometimes be unduly optimistic, and it is common to hear generic statements made about the market picking up and the business aviation sector bouncing back,” commented Cepa chairman Brendan Lodge. “However, such statements can be general and not appropriate for the audience, and frankly not helpful when some are struggling to survive. At the Cepa conference we would like individuals, organizations and companies taking part to get a realistic insight into where the market vulnerability is and also where the real opportunities lie.”
Cepa conference sessions will cover topics such as aircraft and charter brokering, legal issues, lobbying and finance. Business aircraft owners and operators continue to face obstacles to growth posed by issues such as anti-competitive taxation rules and difficulties in getting credit approval.
This year’s Cepa Expo will open on the evening of November 28 with the Business Aviation Supper Club, which has previously been held only in UK venues. An exhibition will run alongside the two-day conference at the Prague Congress Center. More information can be found at www.cepaexpo.com.