Considered the “largest aeronautical summit” in the Iberian Peninsula, the initiative promoted by the municipality returns this year to the Ponte de Sor Municipal Aerodrome, between 13 and 17 of October, after having taken place in 2020 in a hybrid format due to the Covid pandemic.
"This year, the 'Portugal Air Summit' returns to its format, I wouldn't say the original, but practically original, it's just not original because it probably won't have the same dimension that it reached in 2019, due to the current contingencies still in force with the pandemic, but it is again at the aerodrome”, said the councillor of the municipality of Ponte de Sor, Rogério Alves, in statements to the Lusa agency. The event, which this year will already have the presence of the public, will maintain the hybrid format, being broadcast as a continuous television broadcast via 'streaming'.
The mayor, responsible for managing the aerodrome, revealed that this year the main theme of the event will be "Flying for a New Start", since the Covid-19 pandemic has affected the economy worldwide, especially the aviation sector and aeronautics that “live with difficulties”. In addition to a strong digital component, with transmissions of debates and other activities over the Internet, this year's edition of the “Portugal Air Summit” will once again feature in the aerodrome space with areas dedicated to various themes and a space for exhibitions.
The initiative event will have the support of several sectors of aeronautics, including the Portuguese Space Agency, which promotes the launch competition of 'rockets' - "EuRoc- European Rocletry Challenge". "This event brings together students from several European universities in launching 'rockets', this year with 20 teams, around 400 students from all over Europe, including, for the first time, a Portuguese team from the Instituto Superior Técnico," he said.
The 'rockets' will be launched at the Santa Margarida Military Field, with this initiative being supported by the Ministry of Defence. “But the entire assembly of this event will take place at the ‘Portugal Air Summit’”, added the mayor. Rogério Alves also revealed that there will be 47 conferences, spread over two studios, with the presence of “204 confirmed speakers so far”.
“The topics under discussion will be very much around the sector's recovery, the pandemic has seriously affected this sector, it is one of the most affected on a global scale. We're going to talk about the new rules for travel, the reduction of airline slot fees, the new guidelines for 'Covid' testing, we're going to have a strong presence of healthcare people to help us see where the future of aviation goes,” he said.
In the aeronautics sector, the impact of Covid-19 will also be debated, the construction of planes that were expected to be delivered to major airlines, with their production being affected by the pandemic, among other issues.