Saif Mohammad Al Suwaidi, Director General, GCAA
The UAE General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) announced today a growth of nearly 9% in the total air movements in UAE airspace during the first quarter of 2011. Total air movements in the first three months of the year were 167.221 thousand, compared to 153.387 thousand during the same period last year.
The GCAA, also announced high growth rates in March 2011 when compared to last February and to March last year. This growth was noted in all air activities and operations, including air safety, security & infrastructure, air transport, licensing, aeromedical and many transactions in relation to civil aviation and associated operations in the UAE.
GCAA's monthly report of March 2011 showed that total UAE air traffic movements were 58.553 thousand, an increase of almost 14% when compared to last February. Average daily air traffic movements in March 2011 were 1889, which represents an increase of 8.9% when compared to the 1734 air traffic movements in the same period last year.
Dubai ranked first with 26276 air traffic movements, or almost 44.9% of total UAE air traffic movements. Over flights stood next at 12547, representing 21.4% of total air traffic movements. Abu Dhabi ranked third with 8310 flights, or 14.2% of total UAE air traffic movements in March 2011.
According to the report, air traffic movements in Sharjah International Airport ranked fourth with 5566 movements representing 9.5% of total UAE air traffic movements. Local flights between UAE airports were in the fifth position with 4837 movements, representing 8.2% of total air traffic movements. Fujairah International Airport witnessed 347 flights, while Al Ain Airport and Ras Al Khaimah International Airport had 169 and 318 air traffic movements respectively. Al Maktoum International Airport witnessed 183 movements. The four airports together represented 1.7% of total UAE air traffic movements last March.
The report indicated that as far as air safety is concerned, GCAA issued and renewed 19 certificates for aircraft maintenance companies, 9 aircraft registration certificates and 43 airworthiness certificates. Further, GCAA conducted 42 inspections and audits, issued 5 air operator certificates, completed 5 aircraft modification transactions, issued 12 simulator certificates and 20 examination permits. In terms of SAFA system 4 foreign aircrafts and one air operator were suspended, and for (ROSI) system 55 aviation incidents were reported.
As for security and infrastructure operations, GCAA conducted 18 inspections and audits of hazard material shippers, prepared 220 airport control tower reports, and held 48 internal and external meetings in relation to security and infrastructure operations with several institutions and companies operating in the field of civil aviation in the UAE.
The GCAA renewed one license for hazard material shipper, prepared 5 airports operations reports, and provided 2 training courses in March 2011 in Abu Dhabi and Al Bateen airports.
As for crew licensing, GCAA issued 202 new crew licenses, renewed 40 licenses, issued 29 temporary permits and 17 letters certifying aircraft license details, completed 341 type additions to licenses, issued 85 replacement licenses, and conducted 40 crew examinations, thereby bringing the number of crew licensing transactions in March 2011 to 754.
As for aircraft maintenance engineers licensing, GCAA issued 32 new licenses, renewed 50 licenses, completed 478 type additions to licenses, issued 5 replacement licenses and 5 temporary permits, and conducted 96 aircraft maintenance engineer examinations, thereby bringing the number of aircraft maintenance engineers licensing transactions in March 2011 to 670.
Regarding aeromedical activities, the report indicated that GCAA issue 1577 medical certificates in various qualified categories, appointed 5 medical committees to hold medical councils, approved 6 medical councils. As such, aeromedical transactions in March 2011 stood at 1588.
Further, concerning air traffic controller transactions, the report showed that GCAA issued 9 new licenses, renewed 14 licenses, and completed 3 type additions to licenses. As for urgent service transactions, there were 429 crew transactions, 11 Aeromedical transactions, 151 aircraft maintenance engineer transactions, and 3 aircraft crew card transactions. As such, urgent service transactions stood at 594.
In terms of air transport, GCAA signed in March 2011 final air transport agreement between UAE and Ecuador, and initialed air transport agreement with Montenegro. Further, three memorandums of understanding were signed with Montenegro, Bangladesh and Austria in relation to air transport services.
The GCAA organized two events in March 2011; the Search & Rescue Forum in Abu Dhabi, and the First Generals for Civil Aviation Meeting in cooperation with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), and signed a cooperation agreement with the Abu Dhabi Airports Company’s Gulf Centre for Aviation Studies (GCAS) with the aim of developing specialized civil aviation human resources through the provision of specialized scientific, technical and administrative training courses.
Commenting on March report H.E. Saif Mohammad Al Suwaidi, Director General, GCAA said: "Air operations in the UAE saw significant growth in the first quarter of 2011. In spite of the current conflicts in the region, the UAE achieved a growth of 9% in the first three months of the year. This highlights the success of the UAE in maintaining high level of stability amid the current conditions and challenges. Air traffic is a strong indicator of the UAE's ability to maintain its advantages at all levels, which forms a strong ground for starting the development of policies that encourage manufacturing in civil aviation in the United Arab Emirates."