U.S. secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson used an analogy from American football to explain why his department will open new customs pre-clearance facilities at foreign airports to screen against potential terrorists. “Any opportunity I have to defend the end zone from the 50 (yard line) and not just my one-yard line, I will take,” Johnson said October 14 in a speech to the Association of the U.S. Army annual meeting in Washington, D.C.
[Updated July 30 with new information]
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency has designated Reina Beatrix International Airport in Oranjestad, Aruba, as the second international authorized pre-clearance location for general aviation aircraft transporting up to 19 passengers and crew. Ireland’s Shannon Airport was the first to receive the approval, in March 2010.
Marching to the theme of the Star Wars movies, speakers for the 2013 opening session of ABACE found their places on the broad stage in the Shanghai Hawker Pacific hangar at Hongqiao International Airport and the event began.
The general theme of all the speakers, from Ed Bolen, president, National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), to Gary Locke, United States Ambassador to China, was one of cooperation of efforts to bring a vibrant and viable business aviation industry to China.
The ASA Group has opened its first office in China. The international aviation services company obtains landing and over-flight permits provides flight supervision and coordination, travel safety consulting, ground transport and hotel bookings and arranges catering. ASA has several offices throughout Asia, as well as in London and the U.S. Its newest office will serve clients traveling to Shanghai through both Pudong and Hongqiao International Airports.
It’s been two years since Jetex Flight Support opened its new office in China to provide assistance both to the growing numbers of Chinese business aircraft operators and to visiting foreign aircraft.
Shanghai Hawker Pacific Business Aviation Service Centre, located at Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport, is reporting a 145-percent increase in business aviation traffic over the past 12 months.
Business aviation activity is picking up in Thailand, with the Southeast Asian country enjoying a period of relative political stability after the recent general election. According to Bangkok-based bizav services group MJets, traffic levels at the capital’s Don Mueang Airport are about 20 percent higher than in 2010, with its FBO handling an average of 50 movements each month.
The Transportation Security Administration has added several new FBOs as approved gateways for general aviation operators using the DCA Access Standard Security Program (DASSP) for flights into Reagan National Airport (DCA). Joining the list of more than 70 locations nationwide are Signature Flight Support’s facilities at Denver International and Centennial Airports in Colorado, Tac Air at Spirit of St.
Just as EBACE has proved to be a game-changer for Europe’s business aviation community over the past decade, the new ABACE show will provide a key catalyst for the long-awaited growth of the industry in Asia. This was the promise of NBAA president Ed Bolen when he confirmed new dates for the ABACE 2012 event to be held at Shanghai’s Hongqiao International Airport, home to China’s flagship executive aviation terminal.
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