Ways To Improve Efficiencies At GAIA Discussed

Best practices, trends in the aviation and airline industry, and ways to improve services at the Grantley Adams International Airport (GAIA), were some of the main topics discussed during a meeting with the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Ian Gooding-Edghill, along with ministry officials, met with IATA’s Regional Vice President, Peter Cerda, and Area Manager for the Caribbean, Annaleen Lord, in the Ministry’s conference room, this morning.

In his welcome, Minister Gooding-Edghill thanked the IATA officials for the work they conduct, adding that he looked forward to working with the organisation to receive data, knowledge on best practices, and technical assistance that would improve Barbados’ civil aviation procedures.

IATA was founded in Havana, Cuba, on April 19, 1945.  It is the prime vehicle for inter-airline cooperation in promoting safe, reliable, secure and economical air services for the benefit of the world’s consumers. 

Mr. Cerda stated that IATA has always worked closely with Barbados and was of the view that its connectivity made it a “natural hub of the region”.

The IATA Vice President said he wanted to discuss how his organisation could assist in better developing air transport needs. Ways of obtaining better fuel deals, international and intra-regional air connectivity, and how to help Barbados continue to be competitive on a global scale would also be addressed, he disclosed.

Areas discussed during the meeting included: challenges such as air travel cost and connectivity; bottlenecks that impact efficiencies at airports, and loss of industry resources – both the human element and aircrafts being retired from operation during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Other areas the officials highlighted were best practices and trends in the industry, clearance stations, airport infrastructures, Barbados’ ED online immigration form, collaboration agreements, pre-clearance procedures, jet bridges and route development.

Also participating in the meeting were Permanent Secretary (PS) in the Ministry, Francine Blackman; Deputy PS (ag), Juliette Clarke; Director (ag) Civil Aviation, Tracey Forde-Bailey; Deputy Chief Technical Officer, Dionne Gibbs-Nicholls; GAIA’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Hadley Bourne; and CEO of Barbados Aircraft and Aviation Services Company, Diane Shurland.