DALLAS – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has announced that the 78th IATA Annual General Meeting (AGM) and World Air Transport Summit (WATS) are to be held in Doha, Qatar, with Qatar Airways (QR) serving as the host airline.
The event, which takes place from June 19 to 21, brings together the industry’s top executives from IATA’s 290-member airlines, as well as top government officials, strategic partners, equipment suppliers, and the media.
This is the fourth time the IATA AGM will take place in the Middle East, where the aviation industry generates 3.4 million jobs and US$213bn in economic activity in normal times.
World Air Transport Summit
Following the AGM, the WATS officially opens. The Qatar Airways Diversity and Inclusion Awards, now in their third year, will be a highlight. These awards honor companies and individuals that are making a difference in the aviation industry’s 25by2025 effort, which aims to achieve gender parity by 2025.
The WATS will also feature CNN’s Richard Quest moderating the popular CEO Insights Panel, which will include Adrian Neuhauser, CEO of Avianca (AV), Pieter Elbers, CEO of KLM (KL), and Akbar Al Baker, Group Chief Executive of QR, and Jayne Hrdlicka, CEO of Virgin Australia (VA).
Aside from the updated industry economic outlook, key topics to be discussed include the conflict in Ukraine and its implications for the globalized world; the challenges of achieving sustainability, such as achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 and reducing the use of single-use plastics; allocating scarce airport capacity; and ensuring the safe carriage of lithium batteries. A CFO Insights Panel is new for 2022.
Comments from IATA, Qatar Airways Group CEO
“In a few days, Doha will become the aviation capital of the world. The last time we met in Doha, in 2014, we were celebrating the 100th anniversary of the first airline flight. This year’s AGM is another momentous occasion: Airlines are simultaneously recovering from the COVID-19 crisis, setting the path to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, working to improve gender diversity, and adapting to a geopolitical environment that is undergoing its greatest shock in over three decades,” said Willie Walsh, IATA’s Director General.
Mr. Walsh added, “Since we were last in Doha, the region has only increased its importance to global connectivity. According to the most recent figures, the region’s airlines account for 6.5% of global international passenger traffic and 13.4% of freight movements. Much of this growth has occurred in the Gulf region, as is typified by our host airline.”
Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker said, “It is an absolute privilege to be hosting our industry partners in Qatar Airways’ home city, particularly during our milestone 25th year of operations. Coming together face-to-face provides us with the opportunity to discuss lessons learnt from our recent years during the pandemic, global issues affecting us all in the here and now, and to plan the best way forward for the industry.”
Stay tuned to Airways for full daily coverage of the event.
Featured image: Hamad Doha Airport