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High-fliers and high tech at Singapore Airshow


CHALLENGES and opportunities brought about by technology and innovation will be among the hot topics at this year's Singapore Airshow Aviation Leadership Summit (SAALS), the key conference of the event.

The conference, now in its sixth edition, is themed "Reimagining Aviation's Future".

Some of the aviation industry's leading figures who will speak at SAALS include Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu, president of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO); Alexandre de Juniac, director-general of the International Air Transport Association (IATA); and Jeffrey Goh, chief executive of airline grouping Star Alliance.

This was announced by joint organisers Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) and Experia Events at a press conference on Thursday.

In total, about 300 top-level government and industry decision-makers from all over the world are expected to attend the conference.

CAAS director-general Kevin Shum said: "SAALS will provide a timely platform to catalyse critical conversations among the movers and shakers in global aviation, bringing them together to reimagine aviation's future and unlock its full value."

Roberto Kobeh Gonz�lez, former president of ICAO, will give a keynote address on how the aviation industry will react to technological advancements.

Guillaume Faury, who is set to be Airbus Commercial Aircraft's president next month, will speak on the latest technological developments in a session titled "Next Generation of Aircraft Technologies".

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) - a hot topic - will be featured in one of the dialogue sessions. Jessica Wei, head of corporate finance for DJI - the world's largest civilian drone manufacturer - and Carl Burleson, actingdeputy administrator, US Federal Aviation Administration, will discuss the effects and regulations of the UAV industry.

Another session will involve chief executives of SriLankan Airlines and Vietnam Airlines, as well as Star Alliance's Mr Goh. They will discuss whether traditional full-service airlines can use new technologies to gain an advantage over low cost carriers, which have been a driving force in the Asian market for the past few years.

Other conferences at this year's Singapore Airshow will include the Singapore Aerospace Technology and Engineering Conference and the A*Star Aerospace Technology Leadership Forum.

The conferences provide a platform for aviation engineers and manufacturers to present and discuss recent research and developments in aerospace technology.

Close to 50,000 industry visitors from 150 countries and regions are expected to attend the Singapore Airshow, said CAAS and Experia Events.