The aviation industry will remember this year for a long time. At the beginning of March the biggest problem was the huge staff shortages. The ready-to-work pilots and cabin crew have always been less than the needs of the airlines. Today, the industry is facing the worst crisis in its history as a result of the global coronavirus pandemic. What will the future of aviation look like? Is there a chance for development in the crisis? Attempts were made to answer these questions during the Third Aviation Market Congress, which took place on September 18 in Warsaw.
According to the forecasts of IATA, which were presented during the opening speech of the event by the vice president of the International Air Transport Association - Sebastian Mikosz, the return to pre-pandemic passenger traffic may not take place until 2024. However, all panelists participating in the debate agreed that the industry should not only focus on returning to the state before the outbreak of the coronavirus, but rather on developing completely new solutions. Marcin Opaliński, president of LS Airport Services, noted that until recently the industry had not kept up with the dynamics of its development (which was manifested, among others, in the shortage of qualified personnel), so the crisis and sudden stop may be an opportunity for a moment of reflection and working out a new model, which will better meet the needs of aviation in the future.Although at first glance the crisis cast a shadow over the entire aviation industry, the General Aviation sector, which is usually overlooked in public debate, has unexpectedly benefited from it. Empty airports, free air space and access to instructors who before the pandemic were busy flying in the airlines on a daily basis were a surprising advantage of the pandemic and an opportunity for "small aviation" enthusiasts, as mentioned by Maciej Stroiński - the Managing Director of Aeropact, invited to participate in the debate on the directions of aviation development. “Till now young pilots were very rare guests at commercial airports with the queen of Polish airports - Okęcie - at the helm. During the peak of the pandemic, it turned out that the air traffic controllers were eagerly waiting for aircraft, even such small ones. But we have to be aware that the aviation training centers, full of students today, will face another problem in a few months when it turns out that there’s no job for the newly trained pilots” - said Maciej Stroiński.
The Aviation Market Congress is the most important annual event in the aviation sector in Poland.
This year it was held with limited audience participation and with a strict sanitary regime!
Streaming of the event is available here: can be viewed here: https://vimeo.com/event/297335/videos/458083546/?fbclid=IwAR1zxpeltPmnDqMYf8bNPDnJscWNXzJn11LftoqJWqokKBi9Q3yMJv8fJBs
photo: Paweł Bugajski