Chinese aviation is “developing successfully”; ETS “misguided”
The International Air Transport Association has said that it encourages China to continue developing its air transport sector, but adds that this must be done by ensuring sufficient capacity based on global standards and best practices. As China looks to increase its share of world trade from 10.4% to 15%, “aviation connectivity will be critical to making that happen”, Tony Tyler, IATA’s director general and CEO, said at the China Civil Aviation Development Forum 2012 in Beijing. China is prioritizing investments in airport and air navigation infrastructure, he said, but “the challenge is to keep pace with rapidly growing demand, based on the global standards which underpin safe and efficient global connectivity.”
China now ranks second in the world for domestic passengers, seventh for international and fourth for international cargo. But this is only the beginning. Of the 877 million additional global air travellers expected to fly in 2015 than in 2010, some 212 million will be on journeys within or connected to China.
Tyler also addressed the thorny issue of the EU ETS. “China is in the front line of state opposition to Europe’s misguided plans to include international aviation in the ETS. The regional approach will distort markets. We believe that the EU’s unilateral action is in contravention of the Chicago Convention. And I fully understand why China views this as an attack on its sovereignty. Nobody wants a trade war. We continue to urge a solution through the ICAO process,” he said.
IATA’s Annual General Meeting will take place in Beijing on June 10-12.