“There has been an enormous amount of energy and enthusiasm here in Shanghai at ABACE, despite the change in weather from sunny skies on the opening day to rain yesterday,” National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) president and CEO Ed Bolen told AIN as he summed up the show so far.
Two years ago, explained Kurt Edwards, director general of the International Business Aviation Council (IBAC), the idea was floated that the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), which has the mission of improving economic growth in Pacific Rim countries, could also “improve the way that the economies facilitate the movement of business aviation within the region, because business aviation contributes to economic growth.”
Business aircraft manufacturers are seeing Indonesia as the emerging country for business aviation in Asia. They believe that sales, albeit still relatively slow, are poised to grow, mainly due to favorable economic and geographic conditions.
Caribbean aviation services provider IAM Jet Centre has opened its newest FBO, at Grenada’s Maurice Bishop International Airport. The 4,200-sq-ft facility will be the company’s third, joining locations in Barbados and Montego Bay, Jamaica. It features in-house customs and immigration facilities, conference rooms and security screening, as well as passenger and crew lounges. According to IAM group managing director Paul Worrell, the facility will connect private aviation passengers with luxury super-yachts that frequent the Grenadines.
Bulgaria’s small air defense force has been scrambled numerous times in the last two months to meet a growing number of surveillance flights being launched by Russia over the Black Sea following developments in Ukraine, according to minister of defense Angel Naidenov. Although none of the flights violated Bulgarian airspace, they approached and flew along the coast and were operating without flight plans, in turn requiring investigation.
Luanda, Angola-based Best Fly Maintenance plans to open a Part 145 line station at Luanda International Airport in the fourth quarter. The new station will offer line maintenance tasks and scheduled and unscheduled maintenance checks for the G450/550, Falcon 900, Falcon 7X and King Airs. Best Fly will be qualified to work on more than 30 aircraft types.
The second annual Nigerian Business Aviation Conference, to be held in Lagos on March 27-28, is expected to see increased attendance, reflecting the west African country’s position as a hot-spot for industry growth. New topics such as an aircraft owner’s panel and a discussion of the aviation needs of the oil and gas sector have been added to an agenda that already covers topics such as regulator issues and aircraft finance.
Dr. Assad Kotaite, the former council president to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), died on February 27 at age 89. Kotaite joined ICAO in 1953 as a member of the legal committee and served as Lebanon’s council representative from 1956 to 1962 and from 1965 to mid-1970. After serving as secretary general of ICAO for six years, Kotaite was named president of the Council of ICAO in August 1976. He served in that role until his retirement on July 31, 2006, after 53 years of service to the organization.
Quest Aircraft appointed Quest Aircraft do Brasil as the Kodiak dealer for Brazil. The São José dos Campos-based dealer accepted the first Kodiak to be based in Brazil last week, and the turboprop single is now on a demonstration tour in the Latin American country. Quest has delivered five Kodiaks to customers in Latin America over the past two months, so it is optimistic about the aircraft’s prospects in Brazil. The Kodiak received Brazilian certification in 2012 and is certified in 16 countries, with several additional certifications “imminent.”
The defense industries of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) are looking to expand their export market share beyond their traditional customer base–and for the first time are challenging some of the world-leading U.S., European and Russian firms.