China’s travel bug . . .
Boeing recently estimated that 645,000 pilots will be needed by 2038 to fulfil the global demand for air travel. Airbus and the Commercial Aviation Association have similar forecasts. Half of those pilots will be flying in China, outpacing requirements for pilots across the rest of the world. What’s driving the Middle Kingdom’s staggering demand for pilots? Answer: an expanding middle class with an appetite for travel.
Bad experiences in U.S. pilot schools . . .
The suicide last year of 21-year-old Yang Yan, a Chinese student pilot at the U.S. Aviation Academy in Denton, Texas, has drawn attention to the plight of Chinese student pilots at U.S. pilot schools. Yang allegedly endured racial discrimination and bullying from school staff, according to the Yang family. Immediately after the death was reported, other international students from the same academy offered similar testimonies confirming the issue. While this case went mostly under-the-radar in the West, it garnered significant media attention in China.
Flight training in China an opportunity for Canada . . .
The rising demand for pilots in China will likely attract investment in pilot schools in Asia and could open new opportunities for Canadian businesses. The Moncton Flight College (MFC) was the first Canadian company to set up shop in Beijing, while Bombardier, CAE, and CANLink Aviation (which owns MFC and Atlantic Avionics), have all been large providers of simulators and other aviation products and services to the Asia Pacific region.
- Simple Flying: China could account for half of Asia Pacific pilot demand
- Nextshark: A Chinese flight student commits suicide due to alleged racial discrimination
- Moncton Flight College: Moncton Flight College History