To ensure that people can continue to earn a living, the CEO of one of Asia’s largest airlines has urged governments in the area to open their borders. International tourism, which contributed 12 percent to South East Asia’s gross domestic product in 2019, was severely hampered by Covid-19 regulations.
He spoke at the Singapore Airshow, which returned to the city-state this week after two years of severe travel restrictions. He was speaking at the Singapore Airshow.
“Finally, it’s time to take a big breath and look at the evidence… Because Omicron has become a part of society, closing borders is no longer reasonable. “The top executive of Malaysia’s low-cost airline made the announcement.
“It is now our responsibility to safeguard people’s lives and economy,” he said. Like the majority of other airlines throughout the globe, AirAsia recorded a significant loss in 2020. However, whereas low-cost international carriers in Europe and North America had a resurgence in 2021 due to the relaxation of travel regulations, Asian airlines experienced a further decline. For example, Ireland’s Ryanair increased its income by more than threefold from the same period the previous year in the third quarter of 2021. AirAsia’s share price has decreased by a third during the same time.
According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Asia-Pacific was the only area in the globe to fail to see a significant increase in air traffic by the end of 2021, except the Middle East and Africa. While some Asian nations, such as China and Japan, have entirely closed their borders to foreigners, others, like Singapore, have made modest efforts toward less restricted travel via Vaccinated Travel Lanes in some regions of the country (VTLs).
However, flights are restricted and generally more costly, despite providing nearly quarantine-free entrance into Singapore. Other comparable programs in the area are intended to boost tourism but require considerable paperwork, repeated, expensive Covid tests, and brief periods of obligatory isolation. Opening our borders means no more quarantine, forms to fill out, or ongoing testing for me,” Mr. Fernandes said in a statement.
In addition, he stated that “it is time to move on and get on with our lives.” Although the Singapore Airshow returned despite the persistent limitations, many saw it as a sign of renewed confidence in the region’s aviation sector. All of the world’s largest aerospace companies were in attendance, and the majority of them expressed cautious optimism that 2022 would be a better year for the region’s aerospace industry.
“We allow local governments to set the tone, and we follow their example,” said Ted Colbert, the chief executive of Boeing Global Services, located in the United States. “However, we’re prepared for a return, and we’re looking forward to that taking place.” “We anticipate inter-regional travel to resume shortly, and the whole market to return to normal by 2023 or 2024,” he said. On the other hand, regional industry experts believe that much more needs to be done to ensure the full recovery of the industry in the short term, particularly when it comes to developing a more cohesive travel policy between governments.
“Each nation in Asia has its own set of laws, which are often subject to change, making travel in the region unsafe and confusing,” Henk Ombelet, an aviation expert with Cirium, said. In the end, most people choose to either not travel at all or to travel just inside the United States. Because of the uncertainty around snap limits and the possibility of new virus types, passenger services have become a less predictable source of revenue for businesses over the long run. According to the company, Mr. Colbert emphasizes Boeing’s growing emphasis on air cargo, which he says has been pushed by high shipping costs and is expected to expand by 70% by 2040.
AirAsia expanded into other sectors, including food delivery, digital banking, and e-commerce, although many of its aircraft were grounded during this time.
To better represent this shift, the airline’s parent company, AirAsia Group, changed its name to Capital The last month to better reflect its new identity.
Mr. Fernandes, on the other hand, contends that the company’s diversification reflects a lack of faith in its primary business.
“People will always need to travel by air. People are clamoring to go away for a weekend in Phuket, Langkawi, or anywhere they can find themselves. When borders are completely opened, there will be a significant increase in revenue travel.'”
“I suppose that we have reached the end of the road. I’m well aware that I’ve stated this several times before, but I feel that we are on the path to restoration.”