The European Commission (EC) and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) are sponsoring an EU-ASEAN Aviation Summit in Singapore on Feb. 11 and 12, reports the organising board.

Participants, being representatives of airlines, airports, aerospace industries, service providers, national governments and the EC, will discuss Single Aviation Markets – EU and ASEAN Experiences in Integrating Markets, Removing Barriers and Regulating Air Transport; Market Outlook and Business Opportunities in the ASEAN, EU and ASEAN-EU Aviation Markets; Aviation Safety – Regulation and Potential for Cooperation; Air Traffic Management and Airports – Challenges and Opportunities; and Prospects for Further EU-ASEAN Co-operation.

Vietnamese delegates will join in discussions on aviation safety on Feb. 12.

EC Vice-President responsible for transport Siim Kallas expressed his confidence that the Summit will mark the beginning of a new era in EU-ASEAN aviation relations. He said: "The Summit will offer an excellent opportunity to explore the potential for a closer cooperation between the two regions, including the prospect of an ‘open skies’ agreement."

A press release writes that air traffic between the EU and ASEAN has been growing steadily in recent years and nearly doubled over the last 15 years to reach more than 10 million passengers in 2012. Half of the world's traffic growth over the next 20 years will be to, from, or within the Asia-Pacific region, which will thereby become world leader in air traffic by 2030 reaching a market share of 38 percent. ASEAN will be at the very centre of this development.

ASEAN is developing, by 2015, an ASEAN Single Aviation Market which will have many similarities to the single aviation market that the EU has successfully created over the past two decades. This offers interesting new opportunities for cooperation between the EU and ASEAN in aviation.-VNA