Latvian aviation stakeholders have signed a memorandum of cooperation, which will lead to the industry and government jointly creating an aviation strategy for 2019-25.

The wide-ranging memorandum was signed by the Aviation Association of Latvia, which represents more than 40 aviation companies, and Latvian transport minister Uldis Augulis during the 2018 International Riga Aviation Forum (RAF 2018).

Together, the partners will look at future aviation development, spanning passenger, cargo and airport operations.

“The memorandum intends to focus on both business aviation and aviation employment, education and research, aircraft construction, repair and maintenance, aeronautics and related services, as well as financial services and insurance of the aviation industry, aviation equipment manufacturing, supply and related industries, as well as remote aircraft services and their production,” Aviation Association of Latvia board member Arturs Kokars said.

Under the initiative, a new cooperation platform will be established to discuss aviation development and challenges, specifically related to policy planning and improving the business environment.

“Access to information is no longer an obstacle, but the ability to use this information is a major challenge. Therefore, the main beneficiaries of the creation of the Aviation Domain will be the airline operators in Latvia, whose views and proposals will be taken into account in the planning processes of the national aviation policy,” Kokars said.

Speaking for the government, Augulis said Riga Airport and Latvian carrier airBaltic have strong development potential and a “targeted and structured cooperation” between the industry and the government could significantly contribute to the national economy.

“The aviation sector in Latvia is growing rapidly and becoming an increasingly important player in the national economy - its total investment already makes up 2.6% of the gross domestic product,” he said.

Victoria Moores