Tony Fernandes calls for establishment of Asean aviation regulatory authority

KUALA LUMPUR: AirAsia Bhd Group Chief Executive Officer Tan Sri Tony Fernandes has called for ASEAN countries to band together and form a regulatory authority to ensure civilian aviation safety.

"It is a great opportunity for the region to come together and create something like the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and have a strong regulatory authority," he told reporters at Wisma Tune's official opening here today.

He said the establishment of such authority was important, especially as it was tough for all 10 countries to get the necessary skills and budgets.

The responsibilities of EASA should include conducting analysis and research of safety, authorising foreign operators, as well as, the approval of organisations involved in the design, manufacture and maintenance of aeronautical products.

He was responding to a question on the restrictions imposed on Thailand-registered airlines by Japan, South Korea and China due to safety concerns highlighted by the International Civil Aviation Organisation.

He said the ban would not have any impact on Thai AirAsia as its routes were limited to destinations of within four-hour radius.

On a possible initial public offerings, Fernandes said Tune Talk Sdn Bhd and Tune Hotels Regional Services Sdn Bhd would be the next candidates, but, there was no timeline in place for the exercise to be implemented. - Bernama

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