World Financial Symposium will focus on reshaping airline resilience
The event will take place from September 19 to 22 in Doha, Qatar, with Qatar Airways as the host airline
Following the biggest shock in aviation history, the industry is rapidly emerging from the pandemic and government-imposed travel restrictions of the past two years. Industry losses are expected to shrink to $9.7 billion this year from nearly $180 billion in the red in 2020-21. As travel barriers fall in most regions, very strong demand supports expectations of a recovery to pre-COVID-19 traffic levels by 2024, with a chance of profitability in 2023.
At the same time, airline debt levels have soared as companies borrowed to stay afloat during the crisis. And finance departments across the industry will face challenges as the industry achieves its commitment to net-zero flights by 2050.
“Airlines are resilient. Now is the time to take advantage of the hard work and difficult restructurings of the last two years to take advantage of the opportunities that have emerged from the crisis. Finance will play a vital role in supporting the ongoing recovery while creating a sustainable capital structure to support our ambitious environmental agenda,” said Willie Walsh, IATA Director General.
Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive Officer, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker, said: “We are honored to host the first in-person WFS since 2019 during our 25th year of operations. This vital symposium will bring together airline finance leaders and our many supply chain partners to discuss and discuss the way forward and the challenges that must be overcome.”
The highlight of the WFS opening plenary session will be an on-stage discussion with Akbar Al Baker and Willie Walsh on the topic of the future of the industry.
Sessions will address:
Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Reporting and Sustainable Finance Trends
Achieving Net Zero CO2 by 2050
Managing Financial Risks
The Path to Airline Retailing and Customer
Service Fulfillment and Settlement in a World of Offers and Orders airlines
The future of airline payments and payments as value creators
Understanding and preparing for OECD Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) 2.0
WFS will also feature a review of the industry's economic outlook and resilience from IATA Chief Economist Marie Owens Thomsen.