NEW YORK, 8 April 2015: Boeing is fighting tough efforts by rival Airbus to score big gains in the market for long-haul jets, a segment of the massive aircraft market that the US giant has dominated.
Neck-and-neck with Boeing in sales of single-aisle, 150-200 passenger jets, Airbus has badly lagged its US archrival in wide-body aircraft with 250-450 seats.
But Airbus has high hopes for its new A350, which it says is “setting a new standard of efficiency in its class” with a lightweight, carbon fibre composition that can save up to 25% in fuel consumption.
HANOI, 7 April 2015: A bilateral air services agreement between Vietnam and New Zealand will be in place soon so technically airlines from the two countries could establish flights as early as 2017.
New Zealand Ambassador to Vietnam, Haike Manning, told local media that the two countries would establish bilateral aviation ties that would pave the way for airlines to offer direct services between the two countries by 2017.
Once the agreement is signed, airlines from both countries could offer direct flights between Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City to Auckland in New Zealand.
PARIS, 7 Arpril 2015: Information from the second black box found in the wreckage of the Germanwings flight that crashed in the French Alps confirmed the co-pilot acted deliberately and even accelerated as the doomed plane descended, investigators said at the weekend.
“A first reading shows that the pilot in the cockpit used the automatic pilot to descend the plane towards an altitude of 100 feet (30 metres),” said the French BEA crash investigation office in a statement.
“Then, several times during the descent, the pilot changed the automatic pilot settings to increase the aircraft’s speed,” added the investigators.
MANILA, 7 April 2015: The Philippines has become the latest country to require two airline crew in the cockpit at all times, a statement said Sunday, after the co-pilot of a German plane deliberately crashed it last month.
The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines announced its decision after investigators concluded co-pilot Andreas Lubitz intentionally smashed a Germanwings flight into the French Alps after locking his colleague out of the cockpit, killing all 150 people on board.
“For aircraft certified for two pilots, a flight crew-member, preferably male but not necessarily a pilot, shall be required to be inside the flight deck should one of the pilots leave the flight deck for personal reasons,” the regulation read. Read more
COLOMBO, 7 April 2015: Sri Lanka’s new government announced, at the weekend, a criminal investigation into the USD2.3 billion purchase of 10 Airbus aircraft for the island’s loss-making national carrier under the former government.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s office said an independent board of inquiry found gross violations of financial regulations and procurement procedures in state-owned Sri Lankan Airlines’s deal. They said it warranted criminal prosecutions against former executives.
The panel carrying out the probe handed a dossier to Wickremesinghe, Thursday. Officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the government had accepted its recommendations.
BANGKOK, 3 April 2015: Japan’s Civil Aviation Bureau and Thailand’s Civil Aviation Department signed a pact Thursday that will allow charter flights from Thailand to resume until 31 May according to the Minister of Transport Air Chief Marshal Prajin Juntong.
National News Bureau of Thailand quoted ACM Prajin saying that under the pact JCAB will increase scrutiny of Thai airlines.
Airlines that currently operate charter flights to Japan will need to pass JCAB’s safety checks before new routes are allowed. All Thai aircraft will have to go undergo detailed safety inspections from now until 31 May.
PHNOM PENH, 3 April 2015: Cambodia’s State Secretariat for Civil Aviation says it has no plans to follow in the footsteps other Asian nations and ban new flights by Thai-based carriers, after an ICAO international audit raised “significant safety concerns” about the standards of Thailand’s aviation authority.
The SSCA spokesman, Sin Chansereyvutha, told the Phnom Penh Post that Cambodia will take “a softer” neighbourly approach”, stopping short of banning Thai carriers.
“SSCA will monitor this issue. We will make sure that Thai Airlines comply with all [SSCA] regulations and requirements.” Read more
MANILA, 2 April 2015: President Benigno Aquino, Wednesday, hailed renovations to the Philippines’ main international airport, expressing optimism it would soon shake off its ranking on one website as the world’s worst airport.
Almost a year after he personally apologised for the failure of air-conditioning at Terminal 1 of Manila’s international airport, Aquino said the facility appeared to be completely different.
“It is like I have entered a completely different airport,” he told reporters as he inspected the 34-year-old terminal.
HANOI, 2 April 2015: Vietnam’s Civil Aviation Authority has instructed relevant agencies to tighten checks on airline crews in response to the Germanwing’s fatal crash, last week, when the co-pilot deliberately flew the plane into a mountain side.
Tuoi Tre media said aviation authorities have ordered tighter checks on cockpit crews of Vietnam Airlines, VietJet Air and Jetstar.
Besides ensuring security in the cockpit, CAAV also asked airliners to closely monitor any psychological abnormalities of crew members. Read more
DUBAI, 2 April 2015: UAE carriers Emirates Airlines and Etihad Airways said Wednesday an investigation is underway after two of their planes apparently flew too close to each other, but safety was never jeopardised.
The incident took place Sunday in Indian airspace between Emirates flight EK706, travelling from Seychelles to Dubai, and Etihad’s EY622 heading to Seychelles.
Dubai-based Emirates said its aircraft “was involved in an air traffic control incident in Mumbai airspace” but that, “at no point,” were the aircraft, passengers or crew at risk.