Kuala Lumpur, 12 September 2018 – Today, IDEAS has published a new policy paper “Strengthening the ASEAN Single Aviation Market: Implementing the AEC Blueprint 2025 for Air Transport” by Dr Jae Woon Lee. The paper analyses the progress in delivering an ASEAN Single Aviation Market (ASAM), which is a component of the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint 2025. This paper shows the spectacular growth of passenger traffic within ASEAN and how ASEAN has become one of the busiest air traffic routes in the world as a result of integration efforts so far. But since ASEAN is now looking at a higher level of integration, the paper urges further steps be taken to deliver the vision of Single Aviation Market.
The paper also explains that aviation plays a vital role for trade in the region, including facilitating the rapid growth in e-commerce. In order to take full advantage of the potential of the ASEAN Single Aviation Market, the paper recommends:
- National Regulators meet regularly to oversee a harmonisation of safety rules and standards, including accelerating Mutual Recognition Agreements;
- ASEAN Member States take a pragmatic approach to delegating Air Traffic Management, to allow more seamless ASEAN skies;
- ASEAN Member States liberalise ownership and control of airlines and expand the freedom for airlines to operate within ASEAN; and
- ASEAN Member States advance negotiations with partners, concluding an agreement with the EU and further expanding freedoms with China by the end of 2018.
Commenting on the paper, IDEAS Chief Executive Officer Ali Salman said, “This paper recognises the significant achievements made in promoting aviation within ASEAN, but there is further to go if we are to realise the full potential of a Single Aviation Market. The potential prize is significant: greater business connectivity and trade, more tourism and lower prices for consumers .”
Ali Salman emphasises that to establish a formal working group to oversee harmonisation of standards within ASEAN, there is a need for Directors General (DGs) of all ASEAN Member States’ (AMS) Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to meet formally at least once a year to discuss regulatory and technical matters. He says, “DGs of ASEAN CAA require a regular platform to move forward with the implementation of the ASEAN Single Aviation Market policy. Such meetings will allow more in-depth discussions and efficient execution”.
“ASEAN needs to step up their game in advancing the ASEAN Single Aviation Market agenda. The intra-ASEAN total trade itself reached US$ 543.75 Billion in 2016. This proves that ASEAN has a significant potential to benefit from a single aviation market policy in terms of trade between ASEAN member countries. It is time for ASEAN countries stay the course and remain committed to realising the dream of a unified and single regional aviation market”, Ali concluded.
The paper is authored by Dr Jae Woon Lee, an assistant professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong Law School and an expert in aviation. The paper will be presented at the ICAO-EASA Forum on Civil Aviation in South East Asia.
The paper can be accessed from the IDEAS website at here . Alongside this policy paper, IDEAS has published a Discussion Paper which proposes concrete recommendations to progress the ASEAN Aviation Single Aviation Market.