New rules a strong deterrence against intentional misuse of airline slots

It is a common international practice for measures to be imposed on airlines to ensure on-time flight operations (Penalising airlines not best way to ensure on-time arrivals, by Captain Ng Kok Seong of the Air Line Pilots Association Singapore, March 24; and Changi to penalise airlines that don't watch the clock, March 19).

Most airports, including Singapore's, follow the Worldwide Slot Guidelines published by the International Air Transport Association (Iata).

Iata allows for administrative non-financial sanctions to be imposed to deter airlines from misusing slots.

However, in some cases, administrative non-financial measures may not be commensurate with the impact of the worst cases of intentional slot misuse or hogging of slots by airlines.

The new regulations will provide a strong deterrence against such intentional slot misuse.

Airlines that are compliant with the Iata Worldwide Slot Guidelines will not be affected by changes under the proposed legislation.

This means that pilots who have to deviate from their flight schedule for safety considerations need not be concerned that they are exposing their airlines to penalties.

Airlines will have an opportunity to explain before we consider any action to be taken.

Pilots and airlines that prioritise on-time flight operations will, in fact, benefit from more efficient use of airport capacity.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore will take a calibrated approach in the implementation of the new airport capacity management scheme, taking into consideration the views of all stakeholders.

Consultations with the airlines and interested parties will take place in the coming months and we look forward to the Air Line Pilots Association Singapore's active participation.

Daniel Ng

Director (Air Transport)

Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 31, 2018, with the headline 'New rules a strong deterrence against intentional misuse of airline slots'. Print Edition | Subscribe