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We’re Working To Maintain The Best: Khan

Improving and making sure Pacific island airports are compliant with international rules and regulations is the gist of a weeklong seminar which began in Nadi yesterday. Participants from the Pacific
23 Jan 2018 11:00
We’re Working To Maintain The Best: Khan
Participants from around the Pacific region pictured with Airports Fiji Limited executive chairman Faiz Khan at the Airports Council International (ACI)- Developing Nations Airport seminar on Aerodrome Certification, Compliance and Auditing in Nadi on January 22, 2018. Photo: AFL

Improving and making sure Pacific island airports are compliant with international rules and regulations is the gist of a weeklong seminar which began in Nadi yesterday.

Participants from the Pacific region’s aviation industry are meeting to discuss how to improve their services and how to better maintain the resources already in place.

Opening the seminar at the Novotel Hotel in Nadi, Airports Fiji Limited (AFL) executive chairman Faiz Khan said it was a crucial week of discussions on how to maintain airports around the Pacific.

“This is a workshop on aerodrome certification, audit and compliance that’s being organised by Airports Council International (ACI) to assist us the participants from the Pacific island countries,” Mr Khan said.

There were 23 participants from Vanuatu, Cook Islands, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Fiji.

He said they would also have the opportunity to mingle and network with each other.

“Obviously a lot of hard work has been done to get ACI and ICAO to accept our invitation to host these and it comes at some cost to us but more importantly we want the development of aviation in the Pacific region not to be sidelined or forgotten.

“There are big countries in Asia who can host, but by hosting six of these seminars in 2018, we want to show that we are relevant in the aviation industry.”

Mr Khan said AFL was committed to keep all airports and facilities around Fiji up to par with the rest of the world.

“Aerodrome is your entire airport infrastructure, so things like your runway asset needs to be compliant and we’ve got ICAO standards and guidelines that need to be followed in order for Civil Aviation Authority which is the regulatory arm that ensures that aviation standards are kept and met,” he said.

“By attending this seminar, participants know how to better manage those assets.”

He added that developments would not only be concentrated on the big airports, but also to smaller ones around Fiji.

“We look after aerodromes in Fiji where we have only one flight in a week,” Mr Khan said.

“Obviously we don’t have a business case to run these smaller aerodromes, but at the  same time we have a responsibility to the economy of these small outer islands airports so we make sure we maintain them and that they are compliant with the ICAO standards.

“The connectivity of the island states, particularly of the geographical isolation. Once trade and tourism is enhanced in these countries it becomes challenging. Challenging because you’ve got a limited number of flights going in and out of these countries.”

Edited by Percy Kean

Feedback:  lusiana.banuve@fijisun.com.fj

 

 

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