Singapore Airshow: Asia-Pacific’s Crowning Glory

The Airbus Global Market Forecast 2013 projected that the demand for air traffic is expected to grow at 4.7 per cent annually, with the Asia-Pacific being the bustling region of growth as it takes the lead in the surging demand, surpassing Europe and North America

Issue: 1 / 2016By R. ChandrakanthPhoto(s): By Airbus

Located at the heart of the Asia-Pacific region, the Singapore Airshow provides the perfect gateway to this thriving region of growth. Singapore Airshow, Asia’s largest and one of the most important aerospace and defence exhibitions in the world, will return for its fifth edition from February 16 to 21, 2016. Singapore Airshow has been successful in bringing together the largest number of high-level military and government delegations and leading industry players from airlines, airport operators, aircraft manufacturers and related industries from all corners of the globe. The 2016 edition has received a strong vote of confidence with over 1,000 participating companies from some 50 countries all confirming their attendance at the Airshow.

This constitutes over 90 per cent of exhibition space being taken up before the show, 75 per cent of which are returning exhibitors and industry heavyweights, such as Airbus, Bell Helicopter, Boeing, Bombardier, Embraer, Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), Pratt & Whitney, Rolls-Royce, ST Engineering, Thales and UTC Aerospace Systems.

Asian Fleet Size Projections

The projected growth of Asia’s aircraft fleet size over the next 20 years is phenomenal. According to Boeing, Asia will account for close to 40 per cent of new aircraft deliveries whilst North America and Europe will account for 21 percent and 19 per cent respectively, making Asia’s fleet size the largest in the world by 2034. This rate of growth emphasises the need for regional investment to support and expand aviation infrastructure including airport and airspace capacity, and the corresponding increase in demand for MRO (maintenance, repair and overhaul) and other auxiliary services and industries. This underscores Singapore Airshow’s importance as the strategic platform of choice for key industry players to tap on emerging markets, showcase their latest products and technologies, forge partnerships and be attuned to the needs and development of the industry in the thriving Asia Pacific region.

In addition to mainstay events such as the exhibition, static display, aerobatic display, technology seminars and strategic conferences, the upcoming show in 2016 will showcase new and enhanced segments such as Business Forums, back by popular demand. The Business Forums will cover four key areas – Emerging Technologies, Training & Simulation, Asia as well as the partnership between companies in France and Singapore. Together, they focus on the latest developments and business opportunities in the aerospace and aviation markets, providing insights and strategic guidance for attendees to tap on key aerospace growth markets.

Aviation Training, Focus Area

The scope of the aviation training zone has been expanded to include a military training and simulation section to better meet the needs of the industry, in line with growing global demand for training and simulation. Aerospace Emerging Technologies Zone: The Aerospace Emerging Technologies Zone will offer exhibitors a platform to showcase their products and offerings in two broad categories – Aerospace Manufacturing and Aerospace IT.

Shortfall of professionals

The Airbus Global Market Forecast 2013 projected that the demand for air traffic is expected to grow at 4.7 per cent annually, with the Asia-Pacific being the bustling region of growth as it takes the lead in the surging demand, surpassing Europe and North America. While the air transport sector is expanding worldwide, a study conducted by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has illustrated that there is however a shortfall in the supply of qualified aviation professionals and training capacities up till the year 2030. This shortfall is estimated to be at 1,60,000 pilots, 3,60,000 maintenance personnel and 40,000 air traffic controllers. The Asia-Pacific region projects the widest gap between training capacities and training needs over the next two decades, reflecting great potential for this market segment.

Leadership Summit

Staying ahead of current trends, the 2016 edition will see the return of the Singapore Airshow Aviation Leadership Summit (SAALS), A STAR Aerospace Technology Leadership Forum as well as the Singapore Aerospace Technology and Engineering Conference (SATEC 2016). These highly-anticipated strategic conferences will curate discussion topics that are relevant to the current aerospace landscape and serve as a platform for insightful exchange and solutions-based discussions. SAALS 2016 With the theme of ‘Aviation Tomorrow: Managing New Challenges, Realising New Potentials’, will focus on new ideas and emerging technologies, while presenting new challenges for the sector and providing new opportunities and enablers to further drive the success of global aviation. SAALS 2016 will include keynote speeches from high-level government representatives, as well as panel discussions that will examine new developments in aviation and the role regulatory frameworks play in supporting these innovations and allowing the industry to deliver its full potential in a sustainable manner. SAALS 2016 will be at the Raffles City Convention Centre (RCCC) from February 14-15, 2016.

Three key areas of discussion at SAALS 2016 include: the future of the Global Air Hub model; the evolving role of drones in aviation and their impact on the industry; and the way forward for reaching a Global Agreement on Aviation Emissions at the 2016 ICAO Assembly. Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will be the guest of honour at the opening dinner of SAALS 2016. The Forum will bring together the chief technology officers and thought leaders of the aerospace industry to share their views on the latest technological developments. Referencing the theme ‘Technological Perspectives for the Future’, speakers will share insights on meaningful near to mid-term technologies that may be implemented to enhance existing product lines, and key technologies that aerospace companies are keen to explore given a longer time horizon.

Technology Conference, key highlight

Singapore Aerospace Technology and Engineering Conference (SATEC 2016) is the premier aviation conference that is held in conjunction with the Singapore Airshow. It is a platform for researchers, aviation operators and practising aviation engineers to present and discuss key developments and advancements in aerospace technology and engineering. SATEC 2016 is themed ‘Innovation in Aerospace’ and the discussions will centre on the development and implementation of new technologies in the aviation industry.

SATEC is jointly organised by the Singapore Institute of Aerospace Engineers (SIAE) and Air Engineering and Logistics Department (AELD) of the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF). Leck Chet Lam, Managing Director of Experia Events, said, “Singapore Airshow continues to be a catalyst for growth in the global aerospace and defence industry; providing a robust platform for engagement, interaction and dialogue. We are constantly calibrating our programme offerings to reflect key industry trends and create a dynamic environment for each participant.” This is evident in Singapore Airshow’s holistic programme line-up for 2016 that includes the enhanced Training and Simulation Zone and the Aerospace Emerging Technologies Zone as well as partnering France as the 2016 Feature Country and the France-Singapore Business Forum to open doors of partnership between Singapore and France. This enables industry stakeholders to drive future growth trends and leverage key initiatives for further collaboration and development for the global aerospace industry.

France, Feature Country

The Feature Country series was first introduced at the Singapore Airshow in 2014 to spotlight on countries which have strong and thriving businesses in the aerospace, defence and aviation sectors. This year it is France. It is a key global aerospace services and products exporter, with an aerospace, defence and security industry worth 47.9 billion euros. French aviation companies have consistently had a strong presence at the Singapore Airshow and will be able to leverage its Feature Country status to chart new heights and showcase their latest technologies and innovations at the Singapore Airshow 2016.