More than 150 aviation industry representatives gathered at ALTA Aviation Law Americas

Quito, September 6, 2019 – The main Latin American and Caribbean legal, aeropolitical and financial conference, the ALTA Aviation Law Americas, concluded its 13th annual conference on September 6, 2019, in Quito, Ecuador, with the participation of important law firms, airline executives, government representatives and industry associations from throughout the Americas.

During the event, talks and meetings were held on regulatory harmonization, technology adoption in the legal area, personal data protection and risk of data theft, competition and consolidation, international legislation, logistics, and tax issues, among others.

“Passenger traffic in the region has grown 5.1 percent in the first quarter of the year and industry growth remains higher than GDP growth, demonstrating once again how resilient the aviation industry is. The topics discussed in this conference are of vital importance to achieve the projected growth for the next 10 years. Legislation can be even more efficient in our countries and we can take advantage of best practices on technology use, mutually beneficial agreements and regulations, so that more people can make use of air transport,” outlined Luis Felipe de Oliveira, ALTA’s Executive Director and CEO.

“We are aware that every effort made in the sector is insufficient if a country has not guaranteed good air connectivity. This has been understood by the Government of President Lenín Moreno, who sees the tourism industry as a tool for progress and development. Therefore, in December 2017, Ecuador opened to the world with the signing of the Open Skies Decree. With this decision, we are motivating trade, national, regional and global integration, and connectivity with the entire world. Our objective is for more tourists to visit the country and enjoy the wonders we have in our four regions, including the Coast, Galapagos, Andes and Amazonia,” expressed Rosi Prado de Holguín, Minister of Tourism of Ecuador.

“For us as an aviation authority, it is vitally important to promote these venues for debate, exchange of ideas and analysis of policies around the aeronautical sector and support the processes of modernization through the update of regulatory frameworks oriented to the growth of industry and air transport. The adaptation of regulation to the new reality that countries face will be one of the pillars for the improvement of safety and connectivity, which will be reflected in a safer and more efficient air transport that will result in shared benefit,” said Marcelo Jácome, Deputy General Director, General Directorate of Civil Aviation Ecuador, during his speech.

The conference featured a first panel that addressed the perspectives of aviation authorities and airliens on the future of air transport with the participation of Carlos Campillo from Alegre Calderón and Márquez as moderator, Viviana Martin Salazar from Avianca, Augusto Fuster from Paranair, Olga Ramírez from the Ministry of Transport of Colombia, and Daniel Estévez from Ecuador CAA.

Andrea Valencia, Valencia and Sánchez; Russel Pommer, Atlas Air Worldwide; Ariel Díaz, FedEx; and Luiz Arena, Álvarez, Arena Álvarez Advogados spoke about cargo, logistic, tax and customs aspects and its impact on economic development through trade.

This year’s agenda again included an outside perspective with the participation of Ahmad Zamany, Vice President of Technical Operations of Copa Airlines and President of ALTA’s Maintenance & MRO Committee, who presented key aspects related to aircraft maintenance and regulations that impact aeronautical personnel, processes, surveillance and operational safety. He provided fundamental input to further strengthen the technical knowledge of executives in legal areas. ALTA committees act interconnected to add more value to their participants and jointly seek integrated solutions to the industry’s challenges.

José Ignacio García Arboleda, García Arboleda Abogados; Carlos Gutierrez Laguna, AETAI; José Elías del Hierro, Del Hierro Abogados; Julio Costa, HFW; and Carlos Martins, Bersenas Jacobsen further discussed the issue of airlines’ responsibility from Ahmad Zamany’s presentation on maintenance plans and guarantees, and from the perspective of the application of article 19 of the Montreal Convention of 1999.

Thiago Carvalho, D’Andrea Vera, Barao & Carvalho Advogados; Alejandra Reyes, Aeromexico; Sandra Reed, Quiport; Catalina Arbelaez, CMC Abogados; and Elizabeth Freidenberg, Freidenberg, Freidenberg & Lifsic Abogados discussed how to achieve deregulation and de-monopolization models in ground-handling services, successful cases of competition and development of services in the region.

Closing the first day of the academic agenda, Anita Mosner, Holland & Knight; Walter Von Rentzell, LATAM Airlines; Diego Ferrari, Cambiaso & Ferrari; Ricardo Maluf, Maluf and Rodrigues Advogados; and Álvaro Cala, Brigard & Urrutia discussed competition laws, including consolidation and joint venture agreements, the role of traditional travel agencies and what to expect from new business relationships.

Starting the last day of conference, Ricardo Bernardi, Benardi & Schnapp; Nicole Cunha, Basch Rameh; Bart Banino, Condon & Forsyth; and Humberto López Mata, Delta Airlines presented different perspectives on local legislation versus international legislation, the challenge to set borders, and MC99 and Cape Town Convention case studies.

An area that has given rise to much debate is IT and its use in legal departments, including tools available to handle massive needs simultaneously and automatically with ISO certification systems. Juan Carlos Pérez, Paz Horowitz; Ulrich Steppler, Arnecke Sibeth Dablestein; and Jaime Fernández, Augusta Abogados participated in this panel.

Closing the conference, Alejandro Piera, Guanes Heisecke and Piera; Gabriela Alfaro, Nassar Abogados; Sergi Giménez, Augusta Abogados; Francisco Prat, Del Río Izquierdo Abogados; Jorge Reynardus, Amadeus; and Danilo Romero, Holland & Knight talked about personal data protection, what regulations are emerging in the region, the need for harmonization of regulations between countries in the region, and what risks we face in terms of data theft and fraud.

Gonzalo Yelpo, ALTA’s Legal Director, formally closed the conference by recognizing the participation of executives, sponsors and partners and announcing that the 14th ALTA Aviation Law Americas will take place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Thank you to this year’s sponsors: L2B Aviation; Condon Forsyth; Alegre Calderón and Márquez; Cogency Global; Fowler Whitte Burnett; Bernardi & Schnapp; Maluf & Rodrigues Advogados; HFW; Peace Horowitz; Valencia and Sánchez Aviation Solutions; D’Andrea Vera, Barão & Carvalho; Holland & Knight; Arena Alvarez Advogados; and Say Ciero Advogados, as well as the local entities, including CAA Ecuador, Quito Turismo and Quiport.

The city welcomed more than 150 visitors who attended the congress, in a warm event organized by Quito Tourismo in the Botanical Garden (Parque La Carolina). The General Manager of the municipal entity, Carla Cárdenas, expressed the “high honor” that means for the city to receive again an ALTA event, while exposing the high potential of Quito in matters of connectivity and tourism meetings. “In the case of connectivity, we are favored by being in the Center of the World, the meeting point of the northern and southern hemispheres. If we add to this our modern airport facilities with great capacity for expansion, we have a potential regional hub”, said Cárdenas, who ended by inviting attendees to return to the city in the future: “I extend the invitation to return, like all migratory birds that always find their way back to Quito, to start here, together with their dearest relatives and friends”.

Andrew O’Brian, President and CEO of Quiport commented, “We are pleased as co-hosts of this conference to have had the opportunity to bring together so many important actors of the aviation industry in Quito, give them a warm welcome at our airport and join this forum. Working together among all civil aviation actors, as it happened these days in ALTA Aviation Law, is essential to make progress for the benefit of our industry.”

About ALTA
ALTA is a private non-profit association serving the airline industry whose objective is to develop a safer, more efficient, and sustainable aviation in Latin America and the Caribbean. ALTA coordinates collaborative efforts throughout the entire value chain maximizing the impact that aviation has on the economic and social growth of the region for the benefit of industry, nations, and populations served by air transport.


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