Notices & News

Report on successful BACA / BBGA Training Day

19th February 2014

Air charter training day covered topics from accreditation to border control

Broker accreditation, the steady increase in taxes applicable to business aviation and the constantly changing nature of UK border agencies were just some of the topics covered at the recent BACA / BBGA training day.

Tony Coe, Chairman of BACA, explained that many more government and international agencies as well as large companies are demanding that their suppliers have an official industry accreditation. “We have been consulting with experts in this field and looking at how other industries operate and now feel we have a good understanding of what we need to do to establish an international accreditation for air charter brokers,” he said. “We are setting up a discussion panel and will be involving all the relevant parties to develop our proposal.”

Marc Bailey, CEO of BBGA (British Business & General Aviation), called for a greater understanding among government officials and politicians about how business aviation works. “We have a discussion with a government department and then go back a few months later to find a completely new set of people and have to start all over again,” he explained. The sector contributes hugely to the UK economy and employment but this is not recognised. “They continue to impose new taxes – or bring us into existing tax regimes which did not apply before – which impact on the viability of our industry, especially in relation to other EU countries,” he says. “We are the only member state which charges and generates a profit from safety systems.”

Representatives of the ACPO Terrorism and Allied Matters explained the department’s role and said they wanted to work more closely with the industry to help combat terrorism, organised crime and other potential threats to the UK. Sean Gigg, Communications Manager at Border Force, outlined the many changes to the names and responsibilities of the various border agencies over the last few years. He also called for closer dialogue between the Border Force and the business and general aviation industry which will benefit both groups.

Christopher Kohler, MD of WingX Advance, outlined some of the trends in the industry. He said, for instance, that the UK is largest market in Europe for business aviation connections with Africa, with Luton-Lagos a particularly strong route.

Richard Mumford and Daniel James, aviation specialists from law firm Stevens & Bolton, talked the 45 delegates through ‘charter contracts and grey areas’ as well as taking a quick overview of business protection, internal fraud, bribery & corruption and cloning of websites.

The last speaker, James Moreton, Client Assistant Director of Hayward Aviation Ltd, discussed insurance and potential liabilities for charter brokers. He stressed that brokers should always obtain information on operators prior to confirming a flight and never be afraid to ask for additional information. He provided a free checklist which listed essential documents including a copy of a valid AOC (Air Operators Certificate) and aircraft insurance certificate.