SINGAPORE - The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) announced on Thursday (July 16) that it will freeze scheduled fee increases for this financial year to mitigate the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The freeze in fee increases will apply for the period between April 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021. About 170 aviation companies will benefit from the move, saving them $200,000 in total, the authority said.
CAAS added that aviation companies can expect fee increases to be frozen for inspection, testing or evaluation during the certification or approval process for the design, production or distribution of aircraft components or aircraft materials.
Also included are safety inspections during the certification or approval process for the maintenance of aircraft or aircraft components.
Increases to the fees for renewal of an approval or certificate for inspection, overhaul, repair, replacement and modification of aircraft or aircraft components are frozen as well.
Companies that have already paid these fees at increased rates will have the increments refunded to them via their original payment mode.
The fee increase freeze is the latest measure rolled out by CAAS and will give the industry a much-needed lift. The Government has also introduced an enhanced Aviation Support Package to support the Republic's aviation industry, which bore the brunt of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Other measures already in place include CAAS' announcement on Feb 18 that the authority will provide a 50 per cent rebate on its regulatory fees for new and renewed certificates of airworthiness, which is estimated to save Singapore carriers about $6 million in total.
This was followed by an announcement on March 26 that Singapore carriers and the airport operator will be allowed to defer payment of certain fees by up to a year.
These fees - which are due between April 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021 - amount to some $140 million.
Globally, airlines are set to lose US$84 billion (S$117 billion) this year because of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the International Air Transport Association.
The association also said that Asia-Pacific carriers are expected to be hit the hardest and may lose US$29 billion this year.