PM praises Thai Airways over recent awards

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Thailand’s Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has congratulated the country’s national airline Thai Airways International (THAI) for winning a raft of awards, including the world’s most improved airline.

Talking about the government’s efforts to address the aviation sector’s shortcomings, Major General Sansern said the progress was gradual.

The planned changes are taking place under a plan worked out by the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT).

Local authorities are also working with the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to address issues, he said, adding that Thai Airways is in its second phase of reform.

Thailand’s aviation industry has been scrutinised heavily after the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICA) issued a red flag, concerning safety concerns, in June 2015, after Thailand failed to meet standards in regulating aviation firms and grant air operator certificates (AOCs).

Maj Gen Sansern said 17 CAAT staff members have undergone training for aviation safety inspectors and 52 others for other safety issues.

A UK-based organisation has been hired to examine and reissue AOCs, and Thailand will work with the EASA and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to upgrade the oversight of the Thai civil aviation safety in the long run, he said.

The country is due to be audited by the ICAO from December to Mach next year.

The ICAO has commended the government for showing commitment to change and adopting a clear approach in solving the safety issues through the inter-agency collaboration.

The ICAO has also sent eight experts to work with Thai authorities to help the country meet the ICAO’s aviation safety requirements.

In May, ex-THAI managing director Alongkot Poolsuk was appointed director of the CAAT.

SOURCE: Aviation Pros.

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