|The aviation sector must solve the problem of hi-tech personnel shortage if it wants to achieve sustainable development in the years ahead. (Illustrative photo: VNA)
The International Aviation Transport Association rated Vietnam as one of the fastest growing markets in the past decade with an average revenue growth of 17.4 percent, double the 7.9 percent of Asia.
The flight networks of domestic airlines are also expanding rapidly with the presence of five players: Vietnam Airlines, Vietjet, Jetstar, Vasco and most recently Bamboo Airways. Those five and 71 international airlines are operating 140 international routes connecting Vietnam with 28 countries and territories.
Experts in the industry said some airlines expanded their fleets and flight networks too fast compared to resources, resulting in a shortage of hi-tech and technical staff such as pilots and technicians.
Tran Quang Chau, chairman of the Vietnam Association on Aviation Science and Technology, said training has not caught up with development, leading to personnel shortages not only in the contingent of pilots but also in flight controllers, air traffic controllers, or aircraft engineers.
The country has only one pilot training school, the Viet Flight Training school established in 2008, which graduates between 80-100 pilots each year, not sufficient to meet demand.
Meanwhile, all airlines have high demand for pilots to meet their development plans.
Vietnam Airlines, as an example, currently has nearly 1,200 pilots, but it will need 1,340 in 2020 and 1,570 in 2025.
Chau said the shortage of hi-tech personnel is partly attributable to State management agencies. He said the State should have plans on pilot training in accordance with the development of airlines, and suggested that the State may invest in a training facility and require airlines to pay for training.
Nguyen Huu Duc, a transport expert, said the State should consider cooperating with foreign partners in personnel training for the aviation sector.