ACI Asia-Pacific creating sustainable infrastructure development
The 13th ACI Asia-Pacific Regional Assembly took a unified stance to empower airports’ economics and environmental efforts with two resolutions adopted at its annual meeting last week in Narita, Japan.
Ms. Patti Chau, Regional Director of ACI Asia-Pacific said, “As one of the most diverse regions in the world, economically and geographically, it is important to recognize that there is no one-size fits all solution on how airports should be run. Airports should have the flexibility to determine the most appropriate charging system, ownership and management models to best serve and support their communities. Just as important, airports are encouraged to continue engaging in industry-led sustainable development initiatives such as the Airport Carbon Accreditation programme, waste management and renewable energy strategies, not just as a means of responsibly protecting the environment but also for achieving cost savings in the long run.”
Call for Support and Recognition to Create Fertile Ground for Sustainable Infrastructure Development to Serve and Support the Asia-Pacific Communities
In 2017, air traffic in Asia-Pacific and Middle East reached approximately 3.3 billion passengers and is expected to double by 2029. To cope with the surging traffic, significant investment in airport infrastructure, operations and developments is needed.
Although the airport industry as a whole is profitable, as many as 66 percent of the airports in the world are loss-making. Operators need to find a way for airport charges to sufficiently fund and cover their operations, ancillary services and capital costs. ACI Asia-Pacific Regional Assembly called upon airports to promote transparency and consultation with airlines in determining the level of charges. Policy-makers are urged to recognize that airport should have the ability to make commercial and investment decisions and provide the right economic incentives for sustainable infrastructure development.
Airports should have the discretion and flexibility to meet and fund passengers’ facilities and service needs with the most appropriate charging system, ownership and management models best suit local circumstances while still being able to recover their costs and generate returns for their shareholders.
Ms. Angela Gittens, Director General, ACI World said, “The diversity of airports in our Asia-Pacific region is mirrored in each country’s economic and infrastructure development. Even among airports within the same country, the needs and conditions they individually face can be vastly different. Requiring all airports to conform to any single particular model of ownership and management would significantly inhibit them from responding to the specific needs of their passengers and unique local challenges of growth. It is therefore essential that our airport members be allowed to be flexible in how they are managed to best serve their passengers’ and the economic needs of their local, regional, and national communities. This is consistent with ACI World’s position for airports across the globe.”
According to the recent ACI Asia-Pacific Environment Survey, waste management and renewable energy are two of the environmental priorities for Asia-Pacific airports. Airports must ensure aviation environmental sustainability in response to the agreement made at the 21st Conference of Parties to United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, held in Paris, France in December 2015.
The ACI Asia-Pacific Regional Assembly called upon airports to enhance waste management innovatively in order to save costs and achieve the goal of zero waste. Airports were also called upon to consider renewable energy options in their operations to achieve carbon neutrality. Furthermore, airports should integrate waste management and renewable energy in the design of airport expansion projects. Finally, airports were encouraged to make use of ACI and ICAO guidance materials and tools to implement the two environmental priorities.
The next ACI Asia-Pacific Regional Assembly will coincide with the ACI World Annual General Assembly and will be held in Hong Kong from April 2 – 4, 2019, hosted by Airport Authority Hong Kong.