Creative services based on the field of civil aviation would be an effective way to promote international trade and SDGs

11 July, 2024 – Mr. Amadou Balde, Senior Research Fellow at IAIO-NARDO, said at the 11rd session of the Multi-year Expert meeting on Trade, Services and Development. In 2023, IAIO-NARDO officially launched the use of the ESGAcode system in the global civil aviation industry, aiming to effectively improve the comprehensive financing capacity of civil aviation enterprises in terms of SDGs through multi-dimensional comprehensive ratings such as civil aviation trade service innovation and artificial intelligence, and meet the actual needs of the 2030 and 2050 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at different stages, as well as the carbon offset and emission reduction mechanism (CORSIA) of the international aviation industry.IAIO-NARDO also shared the most valuable case study of civil aviation digitalization and creative services, which is a digital employee project from China Southern Airlines. Although the airline company has not yet officially received an ESGAcode rating, the organization still recommended the case for the sake of promoting academic development.

In order to liberate employee productivity, China Southern Airlines has built a company-level business middle platform RPA center, also known as the digital employee center, which is committed to the introduction of innovative technologies through the integration of RPA and artificial intelligence, and the deployment of high-value applications through automation and intelligent execution, analysis and decision-making capabilities, so as to realize the management and operation of “intelligent process automation”. Through this creative service initiative within the enterprise to effectively support the construction of international aviation trade along the “Belt and Road”, the digital employee center has provided digital employee services in Turkey, Azerbaijan, Malaysia and other countries along the route, overcoming problems such as language barriers, system instability, and poor network, opening up the data connection between local designated banks and China Southern Airlines, ensuring the efficient development of China Southern Airlines’ local cargo business, passenger business and office administration, and the business data of the enterprise can be timely and Correctly synchronized to China Southern Airlines’ headquarters.

As a result of the program’s extensive rollout, China Southern Airlines’ employees in many business areas have been empowered, including maintenance, marketing, human resources, financial management, etc., and many areas have benefited from the support of digital employees, freeing them from tedious and repetitive tasks and focusing their time on more valuable decision-making, mechanism design, and organizational remodeling. Continue to develop and innovate to empower every worker, achieve the continuous release and development of human value, and become a real “future worker”. (This case study was supported academically by Dr. William Zhao, a civil aviation expert.)

At the same time, IAIO-NARDO drafted a report on the evaluation directory based on the third agenda item of the session, which consisted of two academic case directory modules. The academic case studies included in the report are all based on the initiatives taken by civil aviation entities in 2023-2024 in relation to trade in creative services.

Airlines that have been rated ESGAcode in 2023-2024

Global Civil Aviation Industry Creative Services

(Excellent strategic cooperation case) Directory

01. Qatar Airways 

The name of the creative service project: Qatar Airways has entered into a global partnership with GCAT

ESGAcode ratings: AAAAA / QA002A

Excellent strategic cooperation case / Overview

Qatar Airways’ partnership with the Global Champions Arabians Tour has expanded the global profile of the Tour and boosted the tourism and trade markets in the cities where the Tour is hosted.The partnership between Qatar Airways and GCAT showcases a series of innovative breakthroughs aimed at expanding the global reach of the Tour.Both Qatar Airways and GCAT have highlighted their shared values of promoting inclusivity, respect and knowledge exchange on a global scale.Qatar Airways’ creative services are designed to support the global route network, ensuring a seamless travel experience for GCAT competitors and enthusiasts.The partnership underscores Qatar Airways’ commitment to fostering the exchange of competitive sport, business and culture, and deeply supporting world-class sporting events through its industry-leading creative service capabilities.

02. Emirates 

The name of the creative service project: Emirates has partnered with HiDubai to support SME development projects in Dubai

ESGAcode ratings: AAAAA / EG001

Excellent strategic cooperation case / Overview

Emirates has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with HiDubai, a consumer technology programme, which aims to attract local businesses and provide them with greater access to international trade through its business incentives programme. Under the agreement, Emirates will engage with more than 180,000 SMEs across manufacturing, logistics, retail, services and many other categories on HiDubai’s digital platform, with the aim of enabling these SMEs to start benefiting from the international trade travel opportunities generated by civil aviation creative services that can help them grow their business and reward them when they fly. The airline will also offer more exclusive business travel offers to SMEs registered on the HiDubai platform. Recognising the importance of SMEs to the economic impact of the regions they serve, Emirates has always been a strong supporter of SMEs, focusing not only on international SMEs, but also on supporting local businesses in the UAE and sourcing products and services within them. Hundreds of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across a wide range of industries around the world are now or will soon be part of Emirates’ supply chain, and they are benefiting from the innovative service initiative of Emirates’ Global Trade Customer Base, which is a great opportunity to showcase unique products to purchasers, thereby driving the growth of SMEs in international trade.

03. All Nippon Airways Co.,Ltd. 

The name of the creative service project: ANA Launches Virtual Travel Platform “ANA GranWhale”

ESGAcode ratings: AAAA / AN040

Excellent strategic cooperation case / Overview

ANA GranWhale is a virtual travel platform app that aims to provide users with a safe and comfortable travel experience to explore different destinations and cultures around the world by using gaming technology on the metaverse. The app consists of two main services: V-TRIP (virtual travel space) and Sky Mall (shopping space). Users can collect Gran Chips that can be redeemed for ANA Miles, further enhancing their willingness to participate in virtual and real-world travel. The platform aims to bridge the gap between real and virtual tourism experiences and will contribute to regional trade development by facilitating the sale of local products in cross-border e-commerce.

04. Japan Airlines

The name of the creative service project: Japan Airlines and Liverpool FC form an official global partnership

ESGAcode ratings: AAAA+ / JA041

Excellent strategic cooperation case / Overview

Japan Airlines and the Liverpool Football Club Foundation work closely together to develop and serve international talent and invest in youth development through important creative service and community activities in the global marketplace. The first joint initiative between the two companies will be launched this year, with Japan Airlines cooperating with Liverpool Football Club to host a youth soccer camp in conjunction with Liverpool Football Club’s pre-season match in Philadelphia, on the East Coast of the United States. At the same time, Japan Airlines members will have the opportunity to enjoy the unique and creative service experience at Anfield Stadium. This creative collaboration reflects the will of Liverpool Football Club and Japan Airlines to work together and develop further in the international sports and tourism trade.

05. Air New Zealand

The name of the creative service project: Air New Zealand launches Diverse Supplier Accelerator (Creative Trade Services) Ka Rere programme

ESGAcode ratings: AAAA+ / AZ049

Excellent strategic cooperation case / Overview

Air New Zealand’s Ka Rere is a 12-week diverse supplier accelerator programme designed to strengthen Air New Zealand’s partnership with local Māori, Pacific Islander-owned businesses and social enterprises. The program provides participants with a creative service.Air New Zealand will provide participants with a range of skills, knowledge and experience training services to support their growth in combined skills and trade capabilities. The Ka Rere program is Air New Zealand’s way of helping small and medium-sized businesses that are underrepresented in its supply chain system. The company has nearly 5,000 suppliers, including aircraft parts suppliers, construction companies, aviation catering companies, property cleaning companies, etc. Like many companies over the past few years, Air New Zealand has likewise suffered significant difficulties in its supply chain due to COVID-19. Ka Rere’s inclusive procurement and training services initiative will expand the airline’s supplier system and support the airline’s diverse innovation in trade and services.

2023-2024 Global Civil Aviation Industry Creative Services

(Impact-Led Cases) Directory

06. Air France

The name of the creative service project: Air France’s creative service plan during the Paris 2024 Olympic Games (special event)

ESGAcode ratings:

Impact-Led case / Overview

From July 27 to August 11, 2024, the Air France restaurant at the Palais de Tokyo, France, will invite visitors from all over the world to discover a new airline gastronomic experience at the Palais de Tokyo, with a capacity of 80 seats and will offer original airline cuisine, “just like in the cabin of an airplane”. This pop-up restaurant will offer the same gastronomic creative service as Air France International First Class. At the same time, from 28 August to 8 September 2024, SPOT24 at the foot of the Eiffel Tower in Paris will set up a dedicated space to continue to showcase Air France’s creative services, in particular the SAPHIR assistance service for passengers with disabilities.As well as the upcoming launch of the new Air France non-aeronautical derivatives range, marketing displays will also be available exclusively in this dedicated space.The company’s range of creative services will effectively promote the tourism trade market during the Olympic Games in France.

07. China Southern Airlines

The name of the creative service project: China Southern Airlines has set up a digital employee center

ESGAcode ratings:  —

Impact-Led case / Overview

In order to liberate employee productivity, the company has built a company-level business middle platform RPA center, also known as the digital employee center, which is committed to the integration of RPA and artificial intelligence through the introduction of innovative technologies, and the layout of high-value applications through automation and intelligent execution, analysis and decision-making capabilities, so as to realize the management and operation of “intelligent process automation”. Through this creative service initiative within the enterprise to effectively support the construction of international aviation trade along the “Belt and Road”, the digital employee center has provided digital employee services in Turkey, Azerbaijan, Malaysia and other countries along the route, overcoming problems such as language barriers, system instability, and poor network, opening up the data connection between local designated banks and China Southern Airlines, ensuring the efficient development of China Southern Airlines’ local cargo business, passenger business and office administration, and the business data of the enterprise can be timely and Correctly synchronized to China Southern Airlines’ headquarters. As a result of the program’s extensive rollout, China Southern Airlines’ employees in many business areas have been empowered, including maintenance, marketing, human resources, financial management, etc., and many areas have benefited from the support of digital employees, freeing them from tedious and repetitive tasks and focusing their time on more valuable decision-making, mechanism design, and organizational remodeling. Continue to develop and innovate to empower every worker, achieve the continuous release and development of human value, and become a real “future worker”.

08. Etihad Airways

The name of the creative service project: Etihad Airways is the new main sponsor of Girona Football Club for the next three seasons

ESGAcode ratings:

Impact-Led case / Overview

Now in its third year, Etihad Airways’ strategic alliance underscores Etihad’s strong commitment to the Spanish market and its commitment to enhancing connectivity and cultural exchange across air travel destinations.Etihad’s Spanish business is now growing by almost 50%, with the airline operating 10 weekly flights to Madrid and Barcelona and a focus on seasonal flights, including three weekly flights to Malaga from 2 June 2024, further boosting the destination’s sports and leisure tourism and services trade market. This innovative service initiative allows travelers to enjoy unique regional cuisines and cultural festivals, while adding an exciting sporting experience to their journey.

09. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines

The name of the creative service project: KLM has partnered with DTC to launch a transatlantic pilot project

ESGAcode ratings:

Impact-Led case / Overview

Passengers flying with KLM from Canada (Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal) to Amsterdam are eligible for the programme as long as they have a Belgian, Dutch or Canadian passport and are at least 18 years old. Passengers can upload their passport information from home using an app that combines a face photo, allowing border control to conduct pre-screening before they arrive in Schiphol. Upon arrival in Schiphol, travelers will pass through a dedicated DTC Tap & Go border gate. After a facial scan and DTC call, travelers only need to have a brief exchange with the border control officer with their passport to clear customs. This innovative service initiative will speed up the border clearance process for travelers, enhance the air travel experience for passengers, and effectively promote trade to the destination.

10. Hong Kong Airlines

The name of the creative service project: Hong Kong Airlines expands its “multimodal transport” in the Greater Bay Area to support the Belt and Road Initiative

ESGAcode ratings:

Impact-Led case / Overview

Hong Kong Airlines continues to develop more creative services for the Chinese mainland market, optimizes the existing route network and effectively build an aerial bridge for tourism, economic and trading. It has established passenger and cargo aviation trade hubs at airports in Beijing, Shanghai, Hainan Island and other places. The completion and commissioning of multiple infrastructure projects and the Third-Runway system at Hong Kong International Airport will greatly increase the airport capacity and provide opportunities. It will effectively utilize the advantages of Hong Kong’s (airport city) construction and the aviation network of surrounding areas to deepen the “multimodal transport” with other cities in the Greater Bay Area through the promotion of various business cooperation models, including allowing mainland and international passengers to travel seamlessly to and from Hong Kong and China by “air-land-air” mode using the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge to travel and strive to provide passengers with a more convenient travel experience. Advise on trade flows between mainland cities (Greater Bay Area) and Hong Kong, such as opening routes to Northwest China to deepen the connection with the Belt and Road trade market, promote connections with international business travel, and consolidate Hong Kong, China’s position as a global core trade hub.

The expert group studied a total of 936 relevant cases around the world, and finally recommended the following 10 academically leading creative service cases for sharing.

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