Page 1

The official publication of ACI Asia-Pacific

Cultural awareness In the spotlight: Cultural awareness Airport report: Doha

Issue 1, 2017

Special report: ASQ Winners Plus: ACI Asia-Pacific news & World Business Partners

Published by



Asia-Pacific Airports Issue 1, 2017

6 View from the top Regional director, Patti Chau,

looks forward to ACI Asia-Pacific’s Regional Assembly, Conference & Exhibition in Doha, reflects on some key achievements in 2016 and talks future strategies.

9 News A snapshot of some of the biggest stories from across the region.

12 That winning feeling

Asia-Pacific gateways once again lead the way in ACI’s Airport Service Quality (ASQ) customer satisfaction awards, winning all the global best airport by size categories.

18 ACI news

The announcement of ACI Asia- Pacific’s Young Executive of the Year, green initiatives, a new publication and the 2016 traffic figures make headline news, writes Vivian Fung.

24 Making an impression

How is Hamad International Airport faring three years after opening? Chief operating officer, Badr Mohammed Al-Meer, brings Joe Bates up to speed.

32 Embracing our differences

Chris Crampton, chairman of the UK and Ireland Chapter of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), considers the importance of cultural awareness in the Asia- Pacific region.

37 All about respect


Brisbane Airport Corporation’s environment and sustainability manager, Wendy Weir, reflects on its efforts to ensure that it operates a culturally aware gateway.



CONTENTS 41 Catering to the Chinese

46 The new dynamic

Airports across the globe have introduced a host of different initiatives designed to appeal to Chinese travellers as their passenger numbers continue to rise.

Outbound travel numbers from Asia-Pacific’s emerging markets will grow twice as fast as those from developed countries over the next five years, according to a new report.

42 Local flavours

48 Industry news

Embracing different cultures and reflecting them in its airport facilities is a key consideration for Plaza Premium Lounge, writes Edward Cheng.

44 In the mood

Is it time for airports to introduce mood managers to ensure the right ambience at airports? Martijn Steur investigates.

Asia-Pacific Airports (APA) Editor Joe Bates +44 (0)1276 476582 Design, Layout & Production Mark Draper +44 (0)208 707 2743

APA Issue 1, 2017

Published by Aviation Media Ltd PO BOX 448, Feltham, TW13 9EA, UK Managing Director Jonathan Lee +44 (0)208 707 2743 Advertising Manager Ellis Owen +44 (0)208 274 1540

Adelaide Airport and Amadeus partner to roll out Australasia’s first fully automated airport management system.

50 All hail Hyderabad

Hyderabad’s Rajiv Gandhi International Airport has achieved carbon neutral status (Level 3+) in ACI’s Airport Carbon Accreditation programme.

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Asia-Pacific Airports (APA) is published four times a year for the members of ACI Asia-Pacific. The opinions and views expressed in APA are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect an ACI policy or position. The content of this publication is copyright of Aviation Media Ltd and should not be copied or stored without the express permission of the publisher.

54 6



VIEW FROM THE TOP Regional director, Patti Chau, looks forward to ACI Asia-Pacific’s Regional Assembly, Conference & Exhibition in Doha, reflects on some key achievements in 2016 and talks future strategies.


e are back in the Middle East for this year’s ACI Asia-Pacific Regional Assembly, Conference & Exhibition, and as with previous hosts from the region – most recently, the Airport International Group, which welcomed us to the Dead Sea, Jordan, in 2015 – I am certain that we can expect a spectacular event and some incredible hospitality in Qatar. Our kind host, Hamad International Airport, promise us a truly memorable experience and the chance, of course, to learn more about aviation development and the challenges and opportunities ahead for Qatar, the Middle East and the entire Asia-Pacific region. I am sure that those of you who have never been to Doha before will be impressed by this modern, vibrant, high-tech and friendly city that only goes to highlight just how culturally rich and diverse our region is. ‘Cultural awareness’ is actually the theme of this first 2017 issue of Asia-Pacific Airports magazine, which I hope you find interesting.


Like elsewhere, sustainable growth remains key to the long-term development of Asia-Pacific’s airports, and I am pleased to report that our APA Issue 1, 2017

airports continue to make great efforts in this area and embrace environmental best practice. A total of 35 airports from across Asia-Pacific have now been certified under ACI’s Airport Carbon Accreditation programme and we are extremely proud to note that Delhi Indira Gandhi International Airport became our first carbon neutral airport in September 2016. They have since been joined by Hyderabad Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, which gained this highest level of accreditation in December (See page 50). Last year also saw China and Japan welcome their first accredited airports. I look forward to reporting on more of these inspiring examples of Asia-Pacific airports on their journey towards carbon neutrality in 2017. ACI Asia-Pacific is absolutely committed to working closely with our members and supporting them on their green journey. We recently renewed a Memorandum of Understanding with China Civil Airports Association, and one of the undertakings in the agreement is to further promote Airport Carbon Accreditation to airports in China. Meanwhile, our Green Airports Recognition programme is designed to promote environmental best practices and recognise and



We actively engage with ICAO and take part in their meetings on a regular basis where we represent the airport community and reflect its position on a range of different issues. In March, for example, we participated in ICAO’s Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP) Working Group 2 meeting in Sydney, Australia. The working group focuses on aircraft noise and emissions issues linked to airports and operations. Indeed, ACI shares many common goals with ICAO and we are in support of its ‘No Country Left Behind’ campaign, which is designed to ensure that the implementation of Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) is better harmonised globally, so that all ICAO States have access to the significant socio-economic benefits of safe and reliable air transport.


Arguably, our region continues to lead the world in both airport investment and the number of new airport construction projects taking place across Asia-Pacific and the Middle East. Airport infrastructure, of course, has to keep pace with the predicted high levels of traffic growth across the entire region over the next 30 years, and the necessity to expand existing facilities or build new ones hasn’t been lost on a number of countries in our region. Dubai International Airport, for example, opened its new Concourse D last year and continues to develop Dubai World Central– Al Maktoum International Airport. Elsewhere, Shenzhen Bo’an has unveiled plans for a new Satellite Concourse, Abu Dhabi International Airport is set to open its eagerly awaited Midfield Terminal in 2019, and both Beijing and Mumbai are planning major new airports. However, wanting and needing new facilities and being able to fund and build them are


honour the airports that achieve outstanding success in their environmental projects. You can read more about this newly launched initiative later on in this issue.

often very different matters for airports across our region. In fact, in reality, many have insufficient funding for new infrastructure, and this is why making maximum use of an airport’s existing assets is absolutely crucial going forward.


One way of doing this and potentially raising capacity at the same time, without the need for new infrastructure, is for airports to invest in their employees to help improve operational efficiency and ensure a safe and secure environment. A host of courses offered by ACI Global Training, our Airport Service Quality (ASQ) customer service efforts and Airport Excellence (APEX) in Safety programme are just a few of the ways we can help airport staff do their jobs better, and ultimately increase efficiency.


ACI is always 100% focused on representing the best interests of our members, and I believe that we know our airports better than ever before after carrying out a Membership Survey this year. Without doubt it has given us an even greater understanding of the needs and concerns, challenges and difficulties of our members. And, just as importantly, it gave them the opportunity to evaluate the work we do and the services ACI provides. We will use the feedback we received to guide us in developing our Strategic Plan for 2018 – 2020 and ensure that our work will be in line with our members’ needs and expectations. For the record, I would just like to add that the participation rate of the survey was very pleasing and provided yet another example of the valuable support we get from our members.


I am sure that 2017, the Chinese Year of the Rooster, will be another productive one for our office in which we further grow our services and become stronger as the voice of Asia-Pacific’s airports. Enjoy this issue of Asia-Pacific Airports magazine and see you in Doha!






FIRST ANNIVERSARY FOR DUBAI INTERNATIONAL’S CONCOURSE D Dubai International Airport (DXB) celebrated the first anniversary of its impressive Concourse D on February 24, with Dubai Airports revealing that it handled 16.6 million passengers during its first year of operations. It represents the final major piece of infrastructure to be built at DXB as part of the $7.8 billion Strategic Plan 2020 programme. The $1.2 billion facility is currently home to 60 international airlines that operate into DXB’s Terminal 1 and connect it to 90 destinations around the world. Its addition has increased the annual capacity of the airport from 75 million passengers to 90 million passengers per annum.

“Concourse D is the outcome of a well-designed and meticulously planned project that was built around the evolving needs and expectations of our customers – the hundreds of thousands of passengers that pass through our airport every day,” enthuses HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman of Dubai Airports and president of the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority. “After a successful first year of operations, it is very clear that Concourse D has achieved its goal of delighting our passengers and our business partners.”

INVESTORS SOUGHT TO DEVELOP IRAN’S GATEWAY The Iranian government is seeking private investors to help it fund a $3 billion facelift of the nation’s airport system. It wants to modernise or expand Mehrabad, Imam Khomeini, Tabriz, Mashhad, Isfahan, Kerman and Shiraz airports, primarily through foreign investment, and according to local press reports, has so far signed Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) with potential investors for around $2.35 billion and secured $650 million in firm contracts. The most high profile MoU to date has been signed with VINCI Airports to develop Mashhad and Isfahan airports, which if it goes ahead, is expected to lead to the construction of two new terminals at Mashhad, Iran’s second biggest gateway. The government wants Mashhad to get a new 43,000sqm international terminal and a 25,000sqm domestic passenger terminal. Earlier this year Italian airport operator, SEA Group, signed an MoU to build a new 80,000sqm

passenger terminal at Teheran’s Mehrabad International Airport. The new $250 million terminal could eventually grow to 120,000sqm and effectively allow the airport to double its capacity from 14mppa to 28mppa. It is also being reported that Italian construction company Vitali SPA has signed a contract to develop Tabriz International Airport, which serves the provincial capital of East Azerbaijan Province. Elsewhere, the government is looking for investors to develop a new 25mppa terminal at Teheran’s Imam Khomeini International Airport under the framework or either a Build Operate Transfer (BOT) or Build Lease Transfer (BLT) agreement. According to the Ministry of Roads and Urban Development, 18.9 million passengers passed through Iran’s airports in the 12 months between March 2015 and February 2016, a rise of 8% on the previous year.




TIMMY TIME Say hello to Timmy, Hong Kong International Airport’s new robot ambassador who was brought onboard for the first time to greet travellers during the Chinese New Year holidays. “Equipped with a microphone and camera, Timmy can greet and interact with passengers and always loves to pose for photos,” enthuses Airport Authority Hong Kong’s deputy director of airport operations, Vivian Cheung. “We are exploring more opportunities to enhance our services and facilities by using the latest technologies.” The gateway handled a record 70.5 million (+2.9%) in 2016 and the growth has continued this year with numbers up 1% in the first two months of 2017, the upturn being driven by the surge in Hong Kong resident travel during the Chinese New Year holidays, which saw a year-on-year rise of 24%. Passenger traffic to and from Japan, Europe and South East Asia registered the most significant increases during the month.


NEW FIVE-STAR HOTEL FOR AUCKLAND Auckland Airport and Tainui Group Holdings have announced an agreement to develop a new 5-star Pullman hotel close to the gateway’s international terminal and the existing 4-star Novotel hotel. While the additional hotel development has long been a feature of its ‘airport of the future’ vision, Mark Thomson, Auckland Airport’s general manager for property, says the timing has been influenced by unprecedented demand for hotel accommodation in Auckland. He notes that building the 250-room hotel is also in direct response to strong demand for new accommodation that provides easy access to the airport terminals. “Auckland Airport plays a key role in New Zealand’s growing tourism industry and in connecting Auckland to New Zealand and New Zealand to the world,” says Thomson. “This hotel will benefit from its premium location adjacent to the international terminal and provide more choices for travellers looking for high quality accommodation within walking distance of both terminals.” APA Issue 1, 2017

Darwin International Airport (DIA) is set to become the home of the 25th aeromedical base for the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS). The RFDS has been transporting patients from Central Australia and the Kimberley region to Royal Darwin Hospital for almost 80 years, utilising a combination of hangar sub-lease and shared access arrangements with general aviation providers at Darwin Airport. However, following the signing of a new 15-year lease agreement between DIA and RFDS Central Operations, the airport has agreed to construct a A$4 million facility to RFDS design specifications. The purpose-built RFDS Darwin Base will be located on land next to the NT Health hangar that serves the Territory’s commercial aeromedical contract. Last year the RFDS transported more than 2,600 Territorians – equivalent to seven patients per day in the APA Northern Territory.




That winning feeling Asia-Pacific gateways once again lead the way in ACI’s Airport Service Quality (ASQ) customer satisfaction awards, winning all the global best airport by size categories.


here is clearly no stopping Asia-Pacific’s airports which once again demonstrated their customer service credentials by winning a host of awards in ACI’s annual Airport Service Quality (ASQ) passenger satisfaction survey. Bigger and better than ever with more airports participating (318) and more award categories than before, a record-equalling 62 gateways were recognised for their customer service excellence in 2016. Led, as always, by Incheon International Airport, which once again scooped the coveted prize for the world’s best airport handling over 40 million passengers. It is the third year on the trot that the Seoul gateway has won the honour, this time finishing ahead of three airports that couldn’t be separated for joint second place – Singapore Changi and India’s Delhi-Indira Gandhi and MumbaiChhatrapati Shivaji airports. China’s Beijing Capital International Airport was third to complete a memorable clean sweep for Asia-Pacific. APA Issue 1, 2017

Treble award winning Incheon was also named Best Airport in the Asia-Pacific region for the 12th successive year and Best Airport by Size and Region in the Over 40mppa category in ACI’s Asia-Pacific region. Asia-Pacific airports actually triumphed in all the global by size categories and for the first time in quite a few years there were new winners in three of the five groups – Taipei Taoyuan (25-40mppa), Haikou Meilan (15-25mppa) and Hyderabad/Tianjin Binhai (5-15mppa), although in Haikou Meilan’s case it was reclaiming the crown it last won in 2014. Talking about Hyderabad International Airport being ranked equal world’s Best Airport in the 5-15mppa category, SGK Kishore, the CEO of operator GHIAL, enthuses: “We are delighted and honoured to be ranked the number one airport in ACI’s ASQ survey. “We are thankful to our passengers for being part of this journey and helping us in reaching this milestone, yet again. “We are also thankful to our many stakeholders, which include the Ministry of Civil Aviation, CISF, the airlines, Immigration and Customs for their co-operation in making Hyderabad Airport the very best airport in the world.



Global Best Airport by Size Over 40 million pax per year First place

Second place (tie)

Third place

Seoul Incheon



Mumbai Singapore 25-40 million pax per year First place

Second place

Third place

Taipei Taoyuan



First place

Second place (tie)

Third place




15-25 million pax per year

Seoul Gimpo 5-15 million pax per year First place (tie)

Second place (tie)

Third place (tie)






Chiang Mai Cochin

2-5 million pax per year First place (tie)

Second place

Third place





“The immense efforts put in by our partner airlines, concessionaires, housekeeping and other support staff played a major role in this achievement.” Jaipur International Airport retained its status as the best airport on the planet in the global 2-5mppa category, only this time the Indian gateway had to share the honour with Guayaquil in Ecuador and Sochi in Russia. Double winning Jaipur also held onto its Best Airport by Size and Region title in the 2-5mppa category for Asia-Pacific. Following suit in terms of being two time winners in the 2016 ASQ awards are


Tianjin, Haikou Meilan and Taipei Taoyuan which followed up their success in the global by size categories with top spots in the respective 5-15mppa, 15-25mppa and 25-40mppa awards for the Asia-Pacific region. In the Middle East, Jordan’s Queen Alia International Airport won the new 5-15mppa category, its success making up for it losing out on a hat-trick of wins for being Best Airport in the Middle East, that honour going to Abu Dhabi International Airport. Amman’s gateway to the world was runner up to Abu Dhabi though, narrowly




edging out Dubai (DXB), which retained its status as the world’s busiest international airport last year. Abu Dhabi International Airport, which expects to open its eagerly awaited new Midfield Terminal in 2019, also won an award for the Most Improved Airport in the Middle East. “We are heartened by the appreciation we are receiving from passengers through these prestigious international awards,” says Abdul Majeed Al Khoori, acting CEO of Abu Dhabi Airports. “These awards are thanks to the hard work of our team at Abu Dhabi International Airport and our stakeholders, and reflects the team spirit of those working in the airport’s terminals to make sure that the passenger experience is as exceptional as possible. “This international recognition is the best vote of confidence in our services, which we strive continuously to develop and enhance to meet the expectations of our unique passenger demographics, and to reflect the proud image of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.”

Reflecting on his airport’s ASQ success, Kjeld Binger, CEO of Queen Alia operator Airport International Group, notes: “It is an honour and a privilege to witness the ongoing progress of Jordan’s prime gateway to the world, which was kick-started in 2013 with the inauguration of the airport’s new terminal by His Majesty King Abdullah II. “QAIA’s success is Jordan’s success, and we have been proud to work alongside our partners in the Government of Jordan to ensure the perpetuation of this fruitful public-private partnership, which continues to contribute to Jordan’s reputation as a welcoming destination for business, foreign investment and tourism.” Binger added: “Over the years, our objective has been to sustain our position as one of the top airports serving 5 to 15 million passengers – this year, QAIA fulfilled that goal, landing in the coveted position of third place worldwide. “This climb would not have been possible without the incredible teams at


ASIA-PACIFIC First place

Second place (tie)

Third place (tie)

Seoul Incheon





Singapore MIDDLE EAST First place

Second place

Third place

Abu Dhabi



Airport International Group and QAIA, in addition to the many partners, shareholders and stakeholders who have offered their unwavering support and passion throughout the years. “Our faith in QAIA and Jordan is stronger than ever, and we look forward to further enhancing customer satisfaction and adding more successes to QAIA’s long and impressive record of achievements.” Other Asia-Pacific airports to do well included Srinagar and Langkawi, which

finished joint second and third respectively in the global Best by Size category for airports handling 2-5mppa; and China’s Changchun Longjia and Hohhot Baita (Inner Mongolia) airports for finishing joint second in the global Best Airport by Size category for 5-15mppa. In the other global Best by Size awards, Sanya Phoenix and Seoul Gimpo were joint second, and Bali’s Denpasar–Ngurah Rai International Airport third, in the 15-25mppa category; and China’s


Best Airport by Region (over 2 million pax per year)




ASQ AWARD WINNERS Shenzhen Bao’an and Hangzhou airports were second and third respectively in the 25-40mppa group.


US President, Donald Trump, should take note that Indianapolis and Jacksonville shared joint top spot with Toronto’s Billy Bishop City Airport for the accolade of Best Airport in North America. It is the fifth year in a row that Indianapolis International Airport has won the award. El Paso, Ottawa and Tampa were joint runner’s up while six gateways shared third place – Austin-Bergstrom, Dallas Love Field, Edmonton, Halifax, San Antonio and Winnipeg. Indianapolis also retained its No. 1 ranking in the Best Airport by Size and Region category in North America for airports handing 5-15mppa. And Indiana’s ASQ champion and Jacksonville finished joint third in the global Best by Size category for airports handling between 5-15mppa, sharing the honour with Queen Alia (Jordan), Chiang Mai (Thailand) and Cochin (India) airports. Referring to its 2016 ASQ performance, Indianapolis Airport Authority’s executive director, Mario Rodriguez, notes: “This is never a small feat. APA Issue 1, 2017

“We’re evaluated on 34 key performance indicators by passengers. To earn their top marks for five years running is a significantly encouraging message to the IND staff that work tremendously hard to ensure a stellar customer experience.” In the other Best by Size and Region categories for North America, the award winners were Saskatoon (Under than 2mppa); Toronto Billy Bishop (2-5mppa); Tampa (15-25mppa); Minneapolis (25-40mppa); and Dallas/ Fort Worth (Over 40mppa). Elsewhere in the world, Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport (SSR International) in Mauritius has cause to celebrate after winning Best Airport in Africa for the third consecutive year, once again pipping South Africa’s Durban (2nd) and Cape Town (3rd) airports to the honour. South Africa did have one out and out ASQ winner though, Bloemfontein’s Bram Fischer International Airport which won awards for the Best Airport in Africa handling under 2mppa and the Most Improved Airport in Africa. Europe’s airports are used to missing out in the global by size categories, but this says more about the fierce competition they face on the world stage than anything else, as any regular reader of Airport World will know that customer service excellence


Most Improved Airport

2-5 million passengers per year




5-15 million passengers per year



Abu Dhabi

15-25 million passengers per year


25-40 million passengers per year

Taipei Taoyuan

Over 40 million passengers per year

Seoul Incheon

Best Airport by Size (Middle East) 5-15 million passengers per year


and innovation is alive and kicking across the continent’s airports. In addition to Sochi, star ASQ performers from the continent in 2016 included Moscow Sheremetyevo, which was runner up for Best Airport in Europe, and joint third placed Dublin, Malta, Porto and Zurich airports. In terms of the Best by Size and Region awards in Europe, Murcia (Under 2mppa); Porto (5-15mppa), Vienna (15-25mppa), Moscow Sheremetyevo (25-40mppa) and London Heathrow (Over 40mppa) took the honours – the latter two for the second successive year. Both Guayaquil and Sochi are multiple award winners and impressed again in 2016. The former being named Best Airport in Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) for the fourth successive year and Sochi winning Best Airport in Europe outright last year after sharing top spot with Moscow Sheremetyevo and St Petersburg-Pulkovo in 2015. The 2016 results also saw Sochi hold on its title of Best Airport by Size in Europe in the 2-5mppa section and Guayaquil winning the equivalent award for the LAC region, which introduced the category for the first time. Other new category winners were Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic and Queen Alia in Amman, which finished top of the pile for airports handling between 5-15mppa in ACI’s LAC and Middle East regions respectively.

Punta Cana also did well in the Best Airport by Region category, finishing equal second in LAC with Nassau’s Lynden Pindling International Airport. Quito and Aruba’s Queen Beatrix International Airport (Oranjestad) came third. Fellow Dominican Republic gateway, Puerto Plata, won Best Airport in LAC handling Under 2mppa and Queen Beatrix lifted the Most Improved Airport award for the region. Most Improved Airport awards for Europe, North America and Asia-Pacific were picked up by Kraków (Poland), Columbus (USA) and Sultan Hasanuddin International Airport in Makassar (Indonesia) respectively.


ACI World director general, Angela Gittens, was quick to heap praise on the ASQ winners and all 318 airports to take part in the organisation’s 2016 benchmarking programme. “I am delighted that as we celebrated the 10th anniversary of helping airports understand how best to serve their customers with the ASQ Programme, we see our largest group of winners ever. “These airports have dedicated themselves to delivering a stellar customer experience. Promoting a culture of continuous service improvement has become a matter of gaining a competitive advantage and optimising non-aeronautical revenue performance. “ACI proudly recognises these accomplishments and we look forward to seeking more effective, efficient and profitable ways of serving the flying public together.” The ASQ Awards Ceremony will be held at the 27th ACI Africa/World Annual General Assembly, Conference & Exhibition in Port Louis, Mauritius, on October 16–18, 2017. APA


Best Airport by Size (Asia-Pacific)





Regional update The announcement of ACI Asia-Pacific’s Young Executive of the Year, green initiatives, a new publication and the 2016 traffic figures make headline news, writes Vivian Fung.


urabhi Rana of Mumbai International Airport Pvt Ltd is ACI Asia-Pacific’s Young Executive of the Year for 2017. Rana beat off stiff competition from 15 other candidates to win the award for her submission paper on the topic of the Challenges and Opportunities for Small and Emerging Airports in the 21st Century. Her paper earned rave reviews from this year’s Panel of Judges for “offering practical solutions that may be considered by small and emerging airports in order to remain viable and competitive”. “I would like to congratulate Surabhi Rana for her outstanding work on the paper,” says ACI Asia-Pacific regional director, Patti Chau. “Her research covered all aspects of small and emerging airports, in particular the challenges they face. “The standard of research papers we received this year was very high. So high in fact that I wish to congratulate all the participants for demonstrating their pragmatic ideas in tackling our industry challenges through their research papers. I am proud that we have so many talented young people in our region.” This year’s panel of judges – led by Emmanuel Menanteau, Co-CEO of Kansai Airports and secretary treasurer of ACI Asia-

APA Issue 1, 2017

Pacific – also unanimously decided to give ‘honourable mentions’ to Maddalena Angelica Gabrielli of Brisbane Airport Corporation and Sandy Kwan of Airport Authority Hong Kong for their papers on Achieving Sustainability for Airports in Asia-Pacific. “Their submissions were very comprehensive and demonstrated a thorough understanding of the topic,” they noted. The ACI Asia-Pacific Young Executive of the Year Award is a research paper competition, introduced in 2009, to encourage and promote innovative ideas and solutions to challenges facing the aviation industry. The 2017 candidates were required to submit research papers on either Achieving Sustainability for Airports in Asia-Pacific or the Challenges and Opportunities for Small & Emerging Airports in the 21st Century.




As its title suggests, the ACI Asia-Pacific Year in Review 2016 highlights the work of the regional office in 2016. Topics in the report include New leadership; Engagement with ICAO; the 11th ACI Asia-Pacific Regional Assembly Resolutions; Building Connections and Member Engagement;  Progress in 2016 –  ACI’s Priority Areas; and Events.

October 16-18 ACI Africa/ACI World Annual General Assembly Port Louis, Mauritius

December 5-7 Airport Exchange Muscat, Oman


October 25-27 The Trinity Forum Bangkok, Thailand


April 23-25 ACI Asia-Pacific Regional Assembly, Conference & Exhibition Narita, Japan


Kerrie Mather* (Sydney Airport, Australia)


Seow Hiang Lee* (Changi Airport Group Pte Ltd, Singapore)


Fred Lam* (Airport Authority Hong Kong, Hong Kong) PS Nair* (Delhi International Airport Limited, India)

SECRETARY-TREASURER Emmanuel Menanteau* (Kansai Airports, Japan)

Correct as of March 2017.


Tan Sri Bashir Ahmad Abdul Majid** (Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad, Malaysia)


Sulaiman Zainul Abidin (Pioneer Aerodrome Service Co Ltd, Myanmar) Aimen bin Ahmed Al Hosni (Oman Airports Management Company, Oman) HE Ali Salim Al Midfa (Sharjah Airport Authority, UAE) Kjeld Binger* (Airport International Group, Jordan)

Kenichi Fukaya* (Narita International Airport Corporation, Japan)

Il-Hwan Sung (Korea Airports Corporation, Korea)

Datuk Badlisham Bin Ghazali (Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad, Malaysia)

Dar-jen Tseng Taoyuan International Airport Corporation (Chinese Taipei)

Derun Li (Shanghai Airport Authority, China)

Mark Young (Adelaide Airport Limited, Australia)

Xue Song Liu** (Beijing Capital International Airport Co Ltd, China)


Pedro Roy Martinez (AB Won Pat International Airport Authority, Guam) ACK Nair (Cochin International Airport Limited, India) Sasisubha Sukontasap (Airports of Thailand, Thailand)

Vikas Gupta (GrayMatter Software Services, India)


Badr Mohammed Al-Meer (Hamad International Airport, Qatar) Guruprasad Mohapatra (Airports Authority of India, India)

* WGB member **Regional Advisor on WGB

The ACI Asia-Pacific region represents 102 members operating 578 airports in 48 countries and territories.



EVENTS 2017 2017






ACI Asia-Pacific is pleased to announce the results of its Green Airports Recognition programme for 2017. Introduced to promote environmental best practices to minimise aviation’s impact on the environment and recognise ACI Asia-Pacific member airports for outstanding accomplishments in their environmental projects, this year’s honours go to Kuala Lumpur International Airport (Platinum), Delhi-Indira Gandhi International Airport (Gold) and Hong Kong International Airport (Silver) for airports handling over 25 million passengers per annum and Darwin International Airport (Platinum), Adelaide Airport (Gold) and Queen Alia International Airport (Silver) for airports handling less than 25 million passengers per annum. Energy management was this year’s theme, which changes every 12 months to reflect the different environmental challenges and priorities faced by airports. ACI Asia-Pacific’s regional director, Patti Chau, says: “I wish to congratulate not only the recognised airports, but all those that

participated this year because their involvement helps exemplify the spirit of this initiative, which is to promote best practice sharing among airports. I would also like to thank the judges for their valuable time and support.” The panel of judges comprised Christopher Paling, project manager for climate change at Manchester Metropolitan University’s Centre for Aviation, Transport and the Environment (CTE); Christopher Surgenor, editor/publisher, GreenAir Online; Juliana Scavuzzi, ACI World’s aviation environmental specialist; Dr Panagiotis Karamanos, aviation environmental consultant; and ACI Asia-Pacific’s Chau. Surgenor says: “The submissions were all of a particularly high standard and it is heartening that energy management and carbon reduction programmes are in place not only at the larger airports but also at smaller ones. “It was interesting to see representation from throughout Asia-Pacific and Middle East and the variety of solutions being implemented. It’s a great start for the Green Airports Recognition.” The winning airports will be recognised at a special awards ceremony during ACI Asia-Pacific’s Regional Assembly, Conference & Exhibition in Doha.


ACI Asia-Pacific’s Regional Environment Committee (REC) is pleased to announce the election of its new chair, Jakrapop Charatsri, of Airports of Thailand (AOT), and vice chair, Wendy Weir of Brisbane Airport Corporation. They will lead the Committee for two years from 2017-2018. Charatsri, a senior airport specialist at AOT, was the founding chair of the ASEAN International Airports Association’s Environmental Working Group. He said: “ACI Asia-Pacific’s Regional Environment Committee plays a significant role in the industry’s efforts to ensure the sustainable development of airports. “I therefore feel obliged to ensure that it continues its good work as we move forward and ensure that no one is left behind.” APA Issue 1, 2017

He thanked immediate past chair, Mike Kilburn of Hong Kong International Airport, for his strong leadership and promise to continue to support the Committee and its endeavours. Weir is BAC’s environment and sustainability manager. She chaired the Australian Aviation Wildlife Hazard Committee from 2012 to 2015 and has over 20 years’ experience in environmental management, with technical expertise in terrestrial ecology, aviation wildlife hazard management and airport environmental management. She says: “I will endeavour to represent the airport community on environmental matters to the best of my ability and will assist with the administration needs of this Committee as required.”





Passenger traffic remained buoyant across the region in 2016, rising by 9% in Asia-Pacific and 9.4% in the Middle East during the year. Domestic traffic grew at a fast pace in India, whereas air carriers in China actively pursued international expansion. Furthermore, low cost carriers (LCCs) spurred demands in various markets as competition with full service carriers intensifies. These factors are expected to support passenger growth into the first quarter in 2017. Cargo also continued its upturn, volumes in Asia-Pacific recovering steadily from June 2016 and accelerated gradually towards the end of the year. The increase was mainly driven by international cargo. In the Middle East, after a slow third quarter, overall cargo growth picked up in the fourth

quarter. Doha (DOH) remained the bright spot, where robust monthly growth was consistently above 20% in the fourth quarter. The year ended on a high for air cargo growth in Asia-Pacific, a 10.9% rise in tonnage during the month of December being largely driven by increased demand for perishables, electronics and e-commerce. The top three freight hubs all delivered a robust increase in volumes in December – Hong Kong (HKG) registering an upturn of 11.3%, Shanghai Pudong (PVG) 14.3% and Seoul Incheon (ICN) 13.8%. In the Middle East, major cargo hubs continued to report significant gains, especially in Doha (DOH) and Dubai (DXB) which recorded an upturn in volumes of 22.6% and 5.4% respectively.


Kansai (KIX) and Osaka (ITM) airports in Osaka have become the first gateways in Japan to achieve recognition in ACI’s Airport Carbon Accreditation programme at Level 2, Reduction. ACI Asia-Pacific’s Patti Chau says: “The achievement demonstrates operator Kansai Airport’s strong commitment to reducing its carbon footprint. ACI Asia-Pacific will continue to work closely with Kansai Airports to help them towards carbon neutrality.”

As of March 2017, a total of 35 airports across Asia-Pacific had gained carbon accreditation under the programme. For further information about the programme in our region, please contact Ken Lau, manager, technical and industry affairs, ACI Asia-Pacific, at Please visit www.airportcarbonaccreditation. org/airport/participants.html to find out which airports are certified and their level of certification.




Making an impression How is Hamad International Airport faring three years after opening? Chief operating officer, Badr Mohammed Al-Meer, brings Joe Bates up to speed.


t maybe just three years old but Qatar’s new gateway to the world, Hamad International Airport (HIA), has already made a big impression for its design, state-of-the-art facilities, IT innovation and reputation for delivering top quality customer service. Doha’s new airport has scooped a number of design awards – it’s wave inspired roof has particularly impressed the construction industry – and become one of the go to places for trialling pioneering new technology and potential new passenger processes. While its impressive facilities and services, which include one of the largest collection of artworks at an airport, have wowed passengers to such an extent that it is one of only six gateways on the planet to earn a ‘5-Star Airport’ rating from Skytrax. In this exclusive Q&A style article, the airport’s chief operating officer, Badr Mohammed Al-Meer, discusses all you need to know about Hamad International Airport’s customer service philosophy as well as a host of other topics ranging from IT innovation, traffic growth and its art and entertainment programmes to being environmentally friendly. APA Issue 1, 2017


It was an exceptional year for our airport, breaking the records for passenger, aircraft and cargo traffic. A new high of 37.3 million passengers passed through our facilities in 2016, which represented growth of 20.5% on the previous year. Our performance was equally strong in the number of aircraft movements and cargo, which increased by 15.8% and 20.8% respectively last year, making Hamad International Airport one of the world’s key cargo hubs. Based on the latest numbers from the region, we are the fastest growing airline hub in the Middle East and we expect 2017 to be another great year for HIA, surpassing the 40 millionpassenger mark.



We were happy to see all our airlines grow during 2016. Qatar Airways has naturally been the main driver of our traffic growth by adding new destinations and increasing its frequencies to many of its existing routes. In parallel, we saw British Airways launch a point-to-point service from Heathrow, Emirates introduce the A380, and five new airlines commence services to our airport. Despite the world and regional economic volatility, Qatar continues its solid growth, which is reflected in the origin and destination traffic from HIA, which increased by 10% in 2016. Qatar Airways currently accounts for around 85% of the total traffic. Emirates, flydubai, Jet Airways and Etihad complete the top five airlines operating out of HIA.

During 2016, our key strategic priorities were to increase HIA’s capacity, improve the product offering and, most importantly, redesign the operational processes to more efficiently accommodate rising traffic demand. Concourses D and E became fully utilised in 2016, increasing the total number of flights departing from contact gates. This added 130,000 square metres of additional functional space to the terminal, enriched our retail offering with new shops and services, and provided passengers with more waiting areas. From an operational perspective, 15 new aircraft parking stands were constructed to support the hub operation of Qatar Airways and we introduced the international best practice of airport stakeholder-driven Collaborative Decision Making (CDM) to optimise the operational management of the airport. Our capacity expansion programme launched this year will enable us to efficiently serve our increasing passenger numbers and handle growing cargo and aircraft movements with our renowned high-quality standards. The programme will ensure that HIA continues to be one of the leading aviation hubs of the world in the coming years.


Customer service is the basic component of our DNA, and developing and implementing a holistic passenger experience strategy was a key priority even before the airport became operational. We initially invested heavily in understanding more about our passengers and their expectations for the brand new airport in terms of its facilities, services and communication with them. What we learnt was incorporated in to our passenger experience and commercial strategy to allow us to better deliver






AIRPORT PROFILE: DOHA and measure the products that would satisfy the very diverse needs of our passengers. Given that exceptional customer service can be only delivered by exceptional staff that work as a team, we invest in our human capital with extensive training programmes and workshops that focus on understanding who HIA’s customers are and what they expect, communicating the survey results, and highlighting the importance of service standards. We are happy to see that our efforts are being rewarded by high scores in our passenger satisfaction surveys, along with international acknowledgement by others, such as Skytrax, which ranks us as one of only six 5-star Airports in the world. Our employees are also consistently voted as the best airport staff in the Middle East.


HIA prides itself on being an innovative exhibition space. Art is an integral part of HIA, having been designed to house permanent and temporary exhibitions. Passengers are exposed to a diverse set of artistic media including paintings, sculpture, electronic and interactive installations. Our airport terminal is a public space that welcomes millions of people every year and is therefore an ideal space to interact with art. Our iconic Lamp Bear by renowned Swiss APA Issue 1, 2017

artist Urs Fischer is located at the heart of the airport and is our landmark for art. Elsewhere our passenger terminal showcases a fascinating selection of art, curated in partnership with Qatar Museums. Its desire to extend art beyond the traditional museum model and into public spaces combines perfectly with our vision for culture to be a central and enriching part of our environment. The artworks you can see at Hamad International Airport are a mix of acquired pieces and others created especially for our unique spaces. The latter include works by local artists like Qatari artist Faraj Duham, who was commissioned to create large-scale murals, whilst artist Ali Hassan produced a desert horse sculpture.


HIA was designed with technology as one of its key contributing factors in delivering operational excellence. A digital transformation programme is also currently underway to ensure that we continue setting benchmarks in customer experience, while improving our efficiency, safety and security. We have embraced ACI/IATA’s ‘Smart Security’ concept by volunteering to be a pilot airport for new technologies. Having one of the most advanced airport IT platforms, during the first trials that





Located on a 22 square kilometre site just five kilometres from downtown Doha, Hamad International Airport (HIA) currently has a single 600,000sqm terminal building, which in 2016 accommodated a record 37.3 million passengers. Designed by HOK, the three-storey terminal building has five concourses and is equipped with a huge central plaza, 41 gates, 25,000sqm of duty free and concessions space (retail and F&B outlets) and an extensive public arts programme showcasing the contemporary and classic work of several nationally and internationally acclaimed artists. “The terminal’s design emphasises Qatari hospitality and gives visitors a spectacular and lasting impression of the country,” says Mark Otsea, AIA, HOK’s project director. He notes that the inspiration guiding the firm’s design decisions was a desire to

provide an exceptional, seamless experience for all passengers. “While contemporary in design to mirror Qatar’s progressive growth, the design pays homage to the nation’s rich cultural heritage and natural environment,” he adds. “The dramatic, curving building silhouette recalls ocean waves and sand dunes to project a powerful image as Qatar’s gateway to the world.” In addition to the main passenger terminal, the gateway has 20 remote stands, a 29-hectare lagoon that reinforces the visual and physical connections to the sea, car parking for 3,431 vehicles, and a 2,100sqm public mosque. Water droplets inspired HOK’s design of the mosque, which resembles a glass shell with a gently domed roof. It has a 35-metre high minaret and can accommodate up to 500 worshippers.

took place last year, we were able to significantly improve efficiency and reduce waiting times throughout the passenger journey by enabling self-service processes. The success of the smart airport pilot programme has validated our plans to promptly introduce the next generation common-use self-service check-in and self-service bag drop services. In parallel, we have also invested heavily in providing passengers with easy-to-access, complimentary unlimited high speed Wi-Fi.

Furthermore, the iBeacon enabled mobile app launched in 2016 offers dynamic wayfinding and live airport information, and will ultimately offer engaging interaction with our passengers. Focusing on airport efficiency, our state-of-the-art Operations Control Centre, equipped with the most advanced technology, has ensured safe and reliable operations. It has also resulted in making HIA one of the best on-time performance airports in the world.




The establishment of HIA as one of the fastest growing cargo hubs in the world has resulted in the commissioning of a second cargo terminal designed with all the necessary specifications to handle the fast growing demand for pharmaceuticals, as well as to reduce the connecting time of transit cargo. The terminal will be built in two phases with the first one being operational by 2020.


Sustainable growth is a fundamental part of our strategy. Although we operate in a very challenging climate, we are fortunate to have environmentally friendly infrastructure, while our sustainability strategy aims at continuously improving our environmental impact. We recently successfully renewed our status in ACI’s Airport Carbon Accreditation programme and have just announced a long-term commitment to tackle climate change and reduce carbon emissions. Our target is to improve carbon efficiency per passenger by 30% by 2030 against a 2015 baseline. It is worth noting that we achieved a 4% improvement in carbon emissions per passenger in 2015, compared to 2014. The ambition is to reduce the 2015 baseline of 5.6 kilos of CO2 per passenger to fewer than 4.0 kilos CO2 per passenger by 2030. To help us achieve this we have also created an Energy Working Group comprising APA Issue 1, 2017

a team of electrical, engineering and environmental technical specialists with the remit to identify and progress energy saving initiatives across the whole airport compound. The group has already begun to implement a number of new projects, including modifications to lighting, heating, ventilation and cooling systems which, when combined, could save up to 4,462,600kWh energy per year.


We are fortunate to have such an ideal geographical location that allows us to have non-stop services to almost every large airport in the world. The latest Qatar Airways service between Doha and Auckland, the longest route in the world, is a perfect example. At the same time, it is a great challenge to have strong competitors around us. We take both factors under consideration when formulating our future development strategies. We remain very confident about the future as we believe that our competitive advantage stems from our internal strengths. We will therefore remain focused on providing airlines with adequate capacity, safeguarding operational excellence and constantly improving our facilities and services to offer an outstanding travelling experience to our passengers. This is how we will ensure that Hamad International Airport remains one of the best airports in the world. APA




Embracing our differences Chris Crampton, chairman of the UK and Ireland Chapter of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), considers the importance of cultural awareness in the Asia-Pacific region.


eyond a basic desire for a beach, travel is a way of broadening the mind and having new experiences. The more we travel, the more we see and, perhaps most importantly, the more we understand. Globalisation may principally refer to trade but the ability to travel across the planet, easily and relatively cheaply – compared to the past at least – can be inferred from the more general concept. In particular, the rise of the low-cost carrier has greatly increased both regional travel and the ability of those from the other side of the world to explore or to do business to ever-greater degrees. There is a narrative that such globalisation has created uniformity, that one place is now much like another. The problem with this line APA Issue 1, 2017

of argument is that it doesn’t take too much travelling to see that it’s simply not true. Even two countries as culturally similar as Britain and Australia have notable differences, and not just in terms of weather! In that instance, the history of both nations makes the commonality in some areas understandable, but it also highlights one of the key points when thinking about cultural difference – that it depends where you’re coming from in the first place. A Briton might find Australia culturally similar, but a Chinese person most certainly would not. The Asia-Pacific region is as culturally rich and diverse as anywhere, both across nations and within them. Indo-China, Thailand and Myanmar are tourism hotspots where the differing histories of the constituent countries, both




ancient and modern, highlight the issue beautifully in microcosm. Thailand is affluent and tourism friendly; Myanmar is exceptionally poor and only now beginning to open up to travellers and trade, more generally, following the election of Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy in 2016. Yet the two countries share a border, and many a traveller moves between the two when visiting, whether by air or over land. And these kind of differences are in no way unusual across the vast Asia-Pacific region, which is home to many countries and thousands of different cultures and languages. Pick a country, pick an entirely different environment. From the industry perspective, aviation or ground, such distinctiveness invariably creates challenges; essentially having to cater for the entire world in each location and destination. Naturally the degree to which that happens is going to depend on the volume of travel from a particular place, but it is still a challenge even when the numbers are sizeable. First and foremost, communication is going to be a key issue in a region of so many different languages. Globally the solution is to use English, simply because it has the widest reach of any second tongue over and above the native speaking countries.

There is little reason to suppose this will change in the foreseeable future, and indeed may well become ever more prevalent as the wider region becomes more affluent. That doesn’t mean native languages are sidelined, but the logic of translation into one alternate language rather than several is self-evident. For now there may be no alternative to this, but it still creates issues for those who don’t speak the language or the native one in a given country. It’s something that is invariably going to apply around the world, and is one that is generally overcome, but language difficulties always create a barrier and can lead to further misunderstandings. Language barriers are of course a given, and not specific to any one place, but the obvious can so often be overlooked that it bears repeating that any other differences are going to be magnified if this is a problem, and more importantly all other differences are going to have this as an additional point to bear in mind. Nevertheless, there are distinct cultural differences between Asia and Europe or the Americas, even before thinking in terms of the differences between countries. Asian nations tend to be rather more collectivist in their thinking – not necessarily in terms of political outlook, but certainly in terms of the group. In a business environment this can sometimes lead to




frustration at being unable to get a decision from a particular individual, which then moves on to a second difference between these groups – the rather acute views on confrontation. When travelling, things can go wrong, but much of the world’s population is far more confident in expressing objections to this than is found across Asia. Causing someone to lose face is humiliating, even if the person doing so is unaware of what they have done. As a general rule, overt displays of emotion are not common in any case, and anger is perhaps the one least seen of all. Clearly, even in potentially stressful environments such as airports, it doesn’t help in any way to show frustration or even worse, to get involved in an argument. It’s not just that it won’t get the result required, it will actively make things worse. As ever, there’s a degree of both sides needing to understand the other here, and for neither to take it personally. Neither approach is better than the other, it is simply a matter of historic cultural norms. The best companies train their staff to be aware of the potential differences, and some go so far as to identify the more specific differences between nationality that might not be immediately apparent – between New Zealanders and Americans or Vietnamese and Chinese, for example. Yet for an outsider, it’s never likely to be easy to identify this unless immersed in the cultures over a substantial length of time wherever it might be. Naturally, religious differences play a major role in many countries, not least those where conflict results from it. But there are numerous restrictions, which are sometimes legal – the APA Issue 1, 2017

most obvious of which might be limited availability of alcohol in Muslim societies – sometimes social and sometimes both. Australasia may be predominantly JudaeoChristian in nature, but South East Asia is largely Buddhist, while east Asia is heavily influenced by Confucianism. An awareness of that and an understanding of how that influences behaviour is essential to even beginning to grasp how the society operates. The essential truth of how to handle cultural differences is the same all over the world, whoever it is and wherever they might be from, and that is to be aware of it. There is no culture that is superior to another, merely different. It is always the case that learning provides the basis for understanding, and patience provides the route to comprehension. The joy of travel is to experience difference, to immerse oneself in an environment that enriches the soul and challenges the mind. To do so, the traveller must set aside their own preconceptions about how people behave and acknowledge that the very essence of a place is in the people who live there. For businesses working across borders the same applies just as much. Sensitivity doesn’t mean deferral, but it does limit the potential for misunderstanding. The Asia-Pacific region is a melting pot of peoples and cultures. It is a celebration of humanity in it’s a hugely diverse and exciting form. Within that is the scope to experience all that can be offered, and with a little care, to come away with an outlook that is both broader and deeper. For an outsider, is there anything more APA that one could wish for?




All about respect Brisbane Airport Corporation’s environment and sustainability manager, Wendy Weir, reflects on its efforts to ensure that it operates a culturally aware gateway.


egardless of how experienced the traveller is or how many air miles they’ve got in the bank, navigating your way around an unfamiliar airport is a stressful experience. Alleviating passenger stress is a key focus for many airports, and there are numerous articles that demonstrate the benefits of having happier, stress-free passengers. Having clear, consistent and unobstructed signage is an obvious start. But how does an airport cater for all nationalities and languages? What cultural and religious needs must be taken into consideration? These are essential questions that must be considered to better cater for all passenger needs and to demonstrate cultural awareness. However, this article focuses on the lesser known, but much valued aspects of one airport’s journey in cultural awareness, and it starts at home, in Brisbane.


Let me set the scene – you’ve arrived in Brisbane, Australia, for the first time. It is sub-tropical, so it’s either a glorious ‘winter’ day or it is hot and humid. Your senses haven’t been confronted by the weather yet as you’re still navigating your way through duty free shopping, border control and customs. At what point do you realise that you have arrived in the traditional lands of the Turrbal, Jagera and Quandamooka peoples, the Indigenous people of the Brisbane region? Brisbane is a cosmopolitan city that celebrates its relaxed, sub-tropical climate and laid back lifestyle through our people and our architecture. We incorporate these design principles into everything we do at Brisbane Airport. But how do you, an international traveller, connect with the people, culture, language, heritage and achievements of the oldest, continuing cultures on Earth - Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples?





This is a question that Brisbane Airport Corporation (BAC) is now on a journey to answer, and it starts with raising our own cultural awareness and understanding of Australia’s Indigenous people in the first instance. For if we don’t understand and celebrate Australia’s Indigenous heritage and culture, then how can we help passengers to?


Our solution was to develop a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) in conjunction with Indigenous employees and Traditional Owners. Brisbane was the first airport in Australia to develop a RAP that was endorsed by the peak body overseeing reconciliation in Australia in May 2016. Reconciliation is an issue that cuts to the heart of who we are as Australians. It involves acknowledging the impacts of colonisation and past policies and practices that are continuing to impact Australia’s Indigenous people today. But Brisbane Airport is just an airport, right? How can an airport solve such a big issue? We certainly can’t solve all the issues, but we can stand up and acknowledge our Traditional Owners, show respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and culture, and look for opportunities together.


A RAP is simply a business plan that documents what an organisation commits to do to contribute to reconciliation in Australia. It enables organisations to commit to implementing and measuring practical actions that build respectful relationships and create opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. These themes form the backbone of our RAP and are explored below. Theme 1: Relationships BAC is committed to building stronger relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. We are striving APA Issue 1, 2017

to create a company culture and environment that connects Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and the airport community, neighbouring community and international visitors to Brisbane. Central to this is fostering mutual respect, sharing and celebrating the rich Aboriginal history of our area and beyond and building beneficial partnerships to further reconciliation. Theme 2: Respect As a gateway to Australia, BAC recognises and values cultural diversity as an asset that enriches our community. We will continue to respect and incorporate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art and cultures into our physical structures and spaces at Brisbane Airport, and celebrate and share Australian Indigenous peoples’ cultural knowledge, relationship to land and sea, histories, perspectives and experiences throughout our core business activities. Theme 3: Opportunities BAC understands the significant social and economic barriers experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities within our region. We will contribute to the efforts to strengthen professional development, employment, access and economic opportunities for Indigenous Australians through our continuing engagement across all facets of core business activities.


Reconciliation is a topic that all people relate to. This is because reconciliation is an issue that goes way beyond Australia. It resonates across cultures, across languages and across time. What are the reconciliation issues relevant to your region or country right now? What additional corporate social responsibility initiatives could your airport do to demonstrate cultural awareness at a holistic, life-changing and humane level? Surely this is an area where an airport can demonstrate its values and show leadership that resonates for all people and across time? There are only benefits from doing so. APA




Catering to the Chinese Airports across the globe have introduced a host of different initiatives designed to appeal to Chinese travellers as their passenger numbers continue to rise.


irports across the globe have reacted to rapidly rising passenger numbers from Mainland China by introducing a range of innovative new services just for Chinese travellers. In Europe, Paris CDG recently joined forces with the Chinese Internet company, Tencent, to trial the Weixin mobile phone app, which it used to communicate and interact with Chinese travellers over the Chinese New Year period. As a result, all app users received a welcome message and a greeting card wishing them a happy year of the Fire Rooster upon arrival at CDG, and subsequently access to a host of information and services via the airport’s official account on Weixin. And from the end of the first quarter of 2017, with the assistance of telecoms operator and Groupe ADP subsidiary HubOne, the airport says Chinese passengers will be given a simple way of accessing the airport’s free Wi-Fi using Weixin. Elsewhere in Europe, Frankfurt Airport has its own team of Mandarin-speaking ‘personal

shoppers’ dedicated to assisting Chinese passengers with their airport shopping. Nearer to home for most Chinese, Sydney Airport has implemented a range of initiatives to welcome Chinese passengers, including Mandarin speaking ‘airport ambassadors’, signage and information available in simplified Chinese in addition to supporting events such as Lunar New Year, and appropriate retail, food and beverage offerings. While Brisbane Airport recently introduced multi-lingual digital menus in its International Terminal to make ordering food at its F&B outlets easier for its Asian visitors. Toby Innes, Brisbane Airport Corporation’s head of retail and commercial, said: “In 2015, we welcomed more than five million passengers through the International Terminal. This initiative is aimed at breaking down language barriers with passengers who might have difficulty with English menus.” Finally, the prize for the most impressive Chinese New Year celebrations outside of China this year arguably goes to Dubai International, which included a traditional Dragon Dance (pictured above) among its offerings.





Local flavours Embracing different cultures and reflecting them in its airport facilities is a key consideration for Plaza Premium Lounge, writes Edward Cheng.


ith arriving early at airports a prerequisite of modern day travel, facilities that provide comfort and entertainment for passengers before they fly can play a key role in customer satisfaction levels, and lounges are no exception. Indeed, airport lounges often provide travellers with their last taste of a destination, which is why facilities that reflect a sense of place for a particular city, region or country are important. This is certainly the philosophy of the Plaza Premium Group, which operates the world’s largest independent airport lounge network and tries to make each of its locations different. Founder and CEO, Song Hoi-see, says: “One can always take the easy way out by replicating an existing airport lounge in a cookie-cutter style, but is this really effective? “Through years of careful observation, we see things differently as we want our travellers to have a sense of place and help them revisit the essence of a city before flying out. Hence, having cultural awareness is instrumental. “The culture and people of every country in which we operate actually give us a lot of inspiration in our creation of each Plaza Premium Lounge.” Having a high level of cultural awareness is one of the many successful factors in collaborating across borders and cultures. And while it can be a daunting task due to the vast amount of differences between some cultures, Plaza Premium Lounge seeks to provide unique, customised facilities through the introduction of tangible and intangible elements to accommodate APA Issue 1, 2017

and appreciate diversity in their operations across 36 international airports.


Creating a distinct ambiance for each and every facility is at the forefront of the company’s thinking from the conceptual design stage. For instance, its lounges in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap have a captivating ‘photo wall’, which feature a collection of vintage pictures of Cambodia that provide a touch of the country’s rich heritage. While in its Taipei lounges, a sense of place is represented by a giant three-metre bas-relief sculpture of the skyline featuring the iconic Taipei 101 skyscraper and the fretwork architecture of Taiwan island embedded in its front wall. Elsewhere, at Singapore Changi, soaring windows evoke a feeling of being outdoors, capture the natural sunlight and allow visitors fantastic views of arriving and departing flights. Rustic elements and modern design is the order of the day at Brisbane Airport, where a combination of Victorian ash wood and 3D wall tiles – inspired by the natural elements of water, sand and minerals – have helped create a warm and relaxing ambiance. Its lounges in Abu Dhabi reflect the beauty of traditional Arabic design and Islamic culture while at London Heathrow a Union Jack flag forms the ceiling centrepiece of a lounge that showcases Britain’s cultural heritage. Finally, in Latin America, the modern design of the lounge at Rio de Janeiro’s Tom Jobim International Airport was inspired by “the soul of Brazil” and the city of its location.





It is important that the fare provided in the lounges also has a strong local flavour, which is why all Plaza Premium Lounge facilities offer national dishes influenced by their location. In India, for example, visitors can enjoy an interactive live-cooking experience and Indian street food, which is an integral part of Indian culture. Adding to the whole theatrical dining experience is India’s most loved beverage – chai. It is a warm and comforting drink during cold weather and an invigorating drink in hot season. Chai is not just a cup of tea in India, but a cultural norm. Elsewhere, fish ball noodle soup is the signature dish at the company’s flagship airport lounges in Hong Kong where visitors can also sample a wide variety of local food offerings from freshly baked pastries, Hong Kong style dim sum and stir-fry to healthy dishes which aptly reflect the rich culinary culture of Hong Kong. While in Malaysia the food offerings include perennial favourites such as nasi lemak; curry laksa; curry chicken; fish ball noodle soup; mee kolok; and Sarawak laksa. Other distinctly local offerings provided at its lounges across the globe include Manitoban beers in Winnipeg; and a typical Qahawa coffee or Kahwa Arabic tea experience in Abu Dhabi.


Without doubt a friendly face and someone who speaks your language is vital to the hospitality experience, which is why visitors to the company’s lounges are welcomed by staff that speak the local language and a host of others. In places such as Malaysia and Cambodia, travellers are respectfully welcomed by Plaza Premium Lounge staff with the local greeting gesture of bowing slightly and placing their right hand over their heart in Malaysia, and bowing their head slightly with hands pressed together at the chest in a prayer gesture, in Cambodia. It is also vital for lounge staff to be sensitive and aware of how culture has an impact on communication and etiquette. A smile and a friendly attitude can make the world of difference to a traveller. It can also help forge a closer understanding between two parties, especially in terms of attitudes and values. In fact, so important is the appreciation of cultural awareness and diversity to Plaza Premium Lounge that it is in its DNA, and this has certainly played a key role in it being voted the World’s Best Independent Airport Lounge operator by Skytrax. “We recognise the different needs of travellers and our aim is to ensure that each and every one of them, regardless of cultural background, has a seamless and comfortable airport experience, creating a sense of place for all,” says Hoi-see.





In the mood Is it time for airports to introduce mood managers to ensure the right ambience at airports? Martijn Steur investigates.


e are people; we are ruled by the mood we’re in. When we’re not in a good mood, we are not happy. When we are not happy, we don’t function well. And to make matters worse, moods can be contagious. In a 2014 study by Fowler and Christakis, researchers looked at the impact of happiness or sadness on friends. The problem with a person who lacks energy and enthusiasm is that their mood impacts others. They can bring others down or pick them up. Moods are even more infectious than germs from people bringing a cold to the workplace. The good news is, of course, that it does work the other way around, too! If you are around a happy person, the probability that you will be happier goes up by 25%. A positive mood is worth billions for companies in any shape and form. Coming from a background in the airport industry, I’ve been involved in the dynamics of airports – talk about a high-traffic location – and learned from up close a thing or two about the struggle with mood. APA Issue 1, 2017


Let’s face it; flying is a severe adversary of anyone’s good mood. The stress factors around flying – and airports can’t help but being the key part in that – are just too high. The stress curve on the opposite page depicts what a typical departing passenger experiences at an airport, and what it brings in terms of worries and anxiety. Naturally, airports are well aware of all this. Airports and their business partners know that happy people are more open to their surroundings, so explore more, and use their dwell-time to spend money. This is one of the reasons why airport invest enormous amounts of effort and money in the selection of shops and retail concepts and the design and layout of airports. Does this effort pay-off? Yes, it does. The most developed airports improve their position in the Airport Service Quality (ASQ) ratings and in recent years these airports have seen a huge increase in non-aeronautical business. However, because mood isn’t a static element in the overall experience at any commercial location, it needs the extra addition of someone who knows what buttons to push to get the mood right every hour of the day.




A ‘mood manager’ sensing what to do, and when to do it, to get the customers in the happy mood that will lift their spirits – and their spending.


High traffic locations are like theatres: they change with every crowd that comes in. Lights, sounds, smells, dynamic, temperature, movements, the whole atmosphere of to the experience depends on what is happening inside the theatre. Well-designed surroundings are undoubtedly essential in creating an attractive look and feel. But those surroundings remain a given, the customers that either trickle or pour into them will bring their own variable mood. Ideally, the mood of every single airport passenger and every single shopping mall visitor should be managed, but it will take some time before we have an app that will make that happen.


In the meantime, the next best thing is a mood manager who‘s sole responsibility lies with nothing but creating the most ideal circumstances for people to feel relaxed, happy and in the mood to spend their time shopping, eating and drinking. This person should form part of the fabric of the airport management team, as it is not just a matter of better lighting or a change of background music here and there. It needs a helicopter view.

Managing the mood of such a usually large area involves the co-operation of many, from the retail outlet’s owners to the F&B people to the technical department. Therefore, it needs to be brought together by someone with the capacity to oversee every possible element that will create an agreed upon mood every day of the year. Someone who will be able to bring retail experience to the table as well as knowledge about consumer behaviour in high traffic locations. A people’s manager for sure, able to inspire everyone involved, to help create the mood they will all profit from after all. Would the addition of a mood manager also work for other large organisations? Clearly it would, as long as the workforce consists of human beings. Bringing in a mood manager responsible for creating and guarding the right positive mood around any company will pay off in terms of higher productivity, greater motivation and involvement, and will add a spark in terms of customer service. Now there’s a thought that should put you APA in a good mood!


Martijn Steur is an experienced commercial manager, consultant and entrepreneur specialising in strategy development and execution.




The new dynamic Outbound travel numbers from Asia-Pacific’s emerging markets will grow twice as fast as those from developed countries over the next five years, according to a new report.


hina is expected to lead the way as outbound travellers from emerging Asia-Pacific countries outnumber those from the region’s developed nations over the next five years, according to a new Mastercard report. Its Future of Outbound Travel in Asia Pacific 2016 to 2021 study reveals that outbound numbers from emerging Asia-Pacific markets currently outstrip those from the developed nations by one and a half times. And it says that this gap will grow more than twice as fast over the next five years – 7.6% versus 3.3% Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR). Collectively, Asia-Pacific markets are expected to grow by 6% annually from 2016 to 2021. Not surprisingly, the largest outbound travel market in 2021 is expected to be China with 103.4 million trips – constituting 40% of all Asia-Pacific outbound travel, nearly four times that of the second and third markets being South Korea (25.6 million) and India (21.5 million) respectively. APA Issue 1, 2017

Forecasted international outbound trips from the top 10 Asia-Pacific markets by 2021, include: 1. China – 103.4 million 2. South Korea – 25.6 million 3. India – 21.5 million 4. Japan – 19.4 million 5. Taiwan – 16.3 million 6. Malaysia – 14.2 million 7. Australia – 11.8 million 8. Singapore – 11.7 million 9. Indonesia – 10.6 million 10. Thailand – 9.1 million “The burgeoning middle class is driving the growth of outbound travel in Asia-Pacific, along with other trends such as the emergence of the Asian millennial traveller, and on the other end of the spectrum, the senior traveller, as well as new technology and infrastructure developments,” says Eric Schneider, Mastercard Advisors’ senior vice president for Asia Pacific. “Asia-Pacific travellers will continue to fuel global tourism growth in years to come,



Forecasted top 10 fastest growing Asia Pacific markets by international outbound trips (2016-2021 CAGR), include: 1. Myanmar – 10.6% 2. Vietnam – 9.5% 3. Indonesia – 8.6% 4. China – 8.5% 5. India – 8.2% 6. Sri Lanka – 6.1% 7. Thailand – 4.8% 8. Philippines – 4.4% 9. South Korea – 3.8% 10. Australia/Singapore/Malaysia – 3.5%


Among emerging markets, Malaysia is expected to record the highest ratio of 198.7% by 2021, whereas India (7.3%), Bangladesh (7.4%), Myanmar (14.6%) and Indonesia (15.4%) are among the lowest, indicating strong growth potential for outbound travel in these markets over the next ten to twenty years, assuming an increasing propensity to travel is combined with a healthy increase in households.

According to the study, outbound travel is forecast to grow faster than real GDP with the exception of Bangladesh, the Philippines and Malaysia. Outbound travel growth tends to be higher than real GDP growth for emerging markets compared to developed markets (except for Japan) where outbound travel growth is much closer to their forecasted real GDP growth. Emerging markets such as Myanmar (10.6% vs 7.7%), Vietnam (9.5% vs 6.2%), Indonesia (8.6% vs 5.7%), Thailand (4.8% vs 3.1%) and China (8.5% vs 6%) are expected to grow faster than real GDP.


By 2021, all developed markets in Asia-Pacific (except for Japan) will have a ratio of over 100% for outbound travel trips to total number of households. It is worth noting that while a ratio of 100% means that on average each household has at least one person who makes a trip abroad each year, in practice it is more likely that a certain percentage of households make multiple trips overseas each year, implying that there are households that do not go abroad at all. Households in Singapore (693.6%), Hong Kong (248.9%) and Taiwan (232%) have the highest propensity to travel abroad.


providing vast opportunities for businesses to benefit through the development of products and solutions that seek to improve their overall travel experiences.” Myanmar is projected to be the fastest growing outbound travel market with a 10.6% annual growth rate over the next five years, followed by Vietnam (9.5%), Indonesia (8.6%), China (8.5%), and India (8.2%). Among developed Asia-Pacific markets, the fastest growing are South Korea (3.8%), followed by Singapore (3.5%), Australia (3.5%) and New Zealand (3.4%).


For the record, the Mastercard’s Future of Outbound Travel in Asia Pacific Report considers China, India, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Myanmar and Sri Lanka to be the region’s emerging nations. It presents an update of Asia-Pacific’s regional outlook of outbound travel from 2016 to 2021 at various household income ranges combined with a five-year forecast of household growth. The data is taken from the 2011 to 2016 editions of the Mastercard Survey on Consumer Purchasing Priorities – Travel. Data for outbound travel from 2013 to 2015 was taken from the national statistics boards of the relevant markets, and that for 2015 and 2016 were calculated using estimates from the 2016 edition of the Mastercard Asia Pacific Destinations Index.





Looking to the future Adelaide Airport and Amadeus partner to roll out Australasia’s first fully automated airport management system.


ith traffic expected to more than double to 18 million passengers annually by 2034, and a vision to become a top tier business centre in Asia Pacific, Adelaide Airport is committed to scaling its airport operations and meeting its growth plans. To help it realise its strategy, the gateway will replace its key operational IT systems with automated and scalable systems provided by Amadeus. Its sophisticated aeronautical airport data management systems are the first cloud-hosted systems in Australasia, and this partnership is expected to position Adelaide Airport as a leader in airport operational data management. Amadeus’ cloud based technology will streamline the gateway’s management of aircraft parking, boarding gates, check-in desks, customer information and other mission critical airport terminal services. Adelaide Airport’s executive general manager for customer service, David Blackwell, enthuses: “The beauty of the Amadeus fully automated technology is it allows us to better prepare for the day ahead. “We can plan further in advance to meet the demands of check-in, baggage handling, gate allocation and customer information, and we can react quicker to last minute changes. “It looks at everything from air traffic control data through to current check-in demand and finds an optimal solution that ultimately provides a more seamless APA Issue 1, 2017

experience for our customers from check-in until they board their flight. “The new technology is also about ‘future-proofing’ the airport as we get busier and busier. We will be able to adapt a lot easier to the increased workload. “It will also be particularly useful as we prepare to expand the main terminal, during which time we’ll need to be more flexible to work around the temporary reduction of facilities during construction.” The agreement to roll out Australasia’s first cloud hosted airport management system will see the implementation of three Amadeus Airport Solutions in Adelaide Airport: Airport Operational Database, Airport Fixed Resource Management Solution, and Flight Information Display System. Some of the key benefits of these include accurate and timely flight and passenger data; automated resource optimisation; advanced scenario modelling; and industry leading flight and baggage information displays. John Jarrell, head of airport IT at Amadeus, says: “Amadeus considers the whole ecosystem of an airport and how we can provide integrated and collaborative solutions for all our customers – ground handlers, airport authorities and airlines. “Although these players have specific needs, they nevertheless share the common goals of on-time performance and improved passenger experience. At Amadeus we consider that we are in the unique position to enable collaboration between these different players through the technology they use.”





MAKING HISTORY IN DUBAI Global engineering group, Cavotec, has won a breakthrough order for its innovative Pre-Conditioned Air (PCA) and 400Hz power technologies for Dubai World Central–Al Maktoum International Airport. The €17.5 million order is one of the largest airport equipment project wins in the group’s history. Cavotec and leading contractor, A&P Group of Companies, are to supply, install, test and commission PCA and 400Hz systems, including underground services, for more than 60 remote aircraft parking positions at DWC. Deliveries are due to start in the second quarter of this year, with the first phase of commissioning planned for the third quarter. The project consists of a large number of Multiple Aircraft Ramp System (MARS) stands, where the supplied equipment will service all types of aircraft, including the A380. “Dubai Airports already use Cavotec’s systems at Dubai International Airport’s Concourse D, remote aprons at Terminal 2, Concourses B and C and the EXPO remote apron at Terminal 3,” says Juergen Strommer, chief operating officer of Cavotec’s Airports and Industry business unit. “PCA technologies play a pivotal role in cooling aircraft in hot environments such as Dubai, and the Cavotec units in this order will enable Al Maktoum International to achieve the highest levels of service, readiness and passenger comfort.” Under the contract, Cavotec will supply state-of-the-art 400Hz converters, and its Super Cool DX PCA technology as part of the expansion project at DWC. Once completed, Dubai World Central-Al Maktoum International Airport is expected to handle some 160 million passengers a year, making it the world’s largest gateway.

AECOM Asia Co Ltd Location: Singapore Contacts: Neil Bentley E: W: AECOM is a global provider of professional technical and management support services to a broad range of markets, including transportation, facilities, environmental, energy, water and government. It provides a blend of global reach, local knowledge, innovation and technical excellence in delivering solutions that create, enhance and sustain the world’s built, natural, and social environments. National Parking Company (Mawgif) Location: Dubai, UAE Contacts: Andrew Perrier E: W: Over the past 14 years National Parking Company has become a leader in parking design, traffic management, technology, operation and valet. We can offer private investment through DBOT/ PPP as well as concession based commercial models. The National Parking Company is the leader in the parking industry by offering a one-stop offering. We can come and audit your current operation and set a road map for your airport parking requirements bringing global expertise.





All hail Hyderabad Hyderabad’s Rajiv Gandhi International Airport has achieved carbon neutral status (Level 3+) in ACI’s Airport Carbon Accreditation programme.


t is the second gateway in the region to achieve the lofty status after Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport. SGK Kishore, CEO of GMR Hyderabad International Airport Ltd (GHIAL), says his gateway’s significant achievement is the result of the operator’s “sustained efforts towards the environment”. “These efforts include proactive energy conservation measures, generation of renewable energy (solar), carbon sinking through extensive greenbelt and various other environment protection measures, with the active support of the airport’s stakeholders,” he enthuses. “Through this, GHIAL has demonstrated its commitment to support the Indian government’s resolution on the nation’s carbon footprint and oblige to COP21 APA Issue 1, 2017

Global Climate Agreement with United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in April 2016.” Under ACI’s programme, carbon neutrality occurs when the net carbon emissions over an entire year is zero. Patti Chau, ACI Asia-Pacific’s regional director, says: “Congratulations to Hyderabad Airport’s team for the excellent achievement in becoming carbon neutral under Airport Carbon Accreditation. We are proud of their accomplishment, which is no easy task. “It demonstrates the airport’s continuous commitment to minimising its environmental impact by reducing and offsetting emissions. “ACI will continue to work with our airport members in their journey towards carbon neutrality, which is crucial for the long-term APA development of our industry.”

Asia-Pacific Airports - Issue 1, 2017  
Asia-Pacific Airports - Issue 1, 2017  

• In the spotlight: Cultural awareness • Airport report: Doha • Special report: ASQ Winners • Plus: ACI Asia-Pacific news & World Business P...