The ‘Doha Declaration 2020’ - CAPA and Qatar Airways urge for greater industry collaboration to deliver a sustainable future framework

7 February, 2020

Most conferences see a lot of useful discussions, but not necessarily actions. CAPA – Centre for Aviation, a trusted source of market intelligence for the aviation and travel industry, attempts to make a difference and with its second edition of its CAPA Qatar Aviation, Aeropolitical & Regulatory Summit has renewed a commitment to the ‘Doha Declaration’, together with event host, Qatar Airways.

The maiden ‘Doha Declaration’ was announced following the sell-out inaugural CAPA Qatar Aviation, Aeropolitical and Regulatory Summit held in 2019, and called into question the modern-day relevance of the global aviation principals outlined in the Chicago Convention, released more than 75 years ago.

The original manifesto addressed liberation of the skies, market access, sustainability and active engagement in aeropolitical discussion at the highest level, and urged aviation stakeholders around the world to join in support of the “business of freedom”.

Based on the critical discussions held at this years’ summit, which took place this week in Doha, CAPA and Qatar Airways have zeroed in on the growing impact of sustainability on the industry. This year’s declaration highlights the essential role of travel and tourism for global connectivity and socio- economic development, and notes the essential need for the industry to engage collectively to reduce the level of emissions.

It acknowledges that the aviation and travel industries recognise there are no single one-size-fits-all solution to the environmental challenges the world is confronted by today and to secure environmental sustainability for future generations, it recommends a range of urgent actions, based around dialogue, education, collaboration and coordination.

Here's the full ‘Doha Declaration 2020’…

Travel and tourism, within a liberal regulatory framework, are essential for global connectivity and socio- economic development. One in 20 new jobs is created in this industry. However, in the face of climate change, it is essential for the industry to engage collectively to reduce the level of emissions.

The aviation and travel industries recognize there are no single “one-size-fits-all” solutions to the environmental challenges the world is confronted by today. To secure environmental sustainability for future generations, it is recommended that urgent action should be taken by:


  • To work actively with manufacturers and fuel suppliers to explore all avenues for emission reduction, including but not limited to using and developing alternative fuels, and ensuring efficient operational processes;
  • To promote a clear and coherent industry message to assure the public that effective measures are being taken;
  • To cooperate with and encourage airports to play an active and integral role in improving operational efficiencies.

Governments (unilaterally and multilaterally)

  • To consult actively with industry to complement industry action while minimizing the regulatory temptation to impose additional taxes in the form of charges and fees;
  • Whenever taxes are imposed, these should be transparently allocated to activities that will serve to reduce the industry’s impact on the environment;
  • To achieve reduction in carbon emissions by improving the effectiveness of air traffic management. Urgent steps should be made in every jurisdiction to achieve rapid improvements in that direction.

Other stakeholders

  • Travellers should be provided with clear, reputable, and globally-acceptable means of off-setting their carbon footprint;
  • Leading education institutions together with the aviation industry should work to define and develop appropriate data and skills – both technical and non-technical – with the ultimate goal to support the development of a strong and effective cohort of aviation environment professionals, and promote equal accessibility to leadership positions.

“Now is a critical time for our global industry. The ‘Doha Declaration’ continues to evolve based on the progress, or lack thereof, of liberalisation in the aviation industry,” explains Peter Harbison, chairman emeritus, CAPA and chair of the Doha summit.

“This insight is driven by the discussion during the CAPA Qatar Aviation, Aeropolitical & Regulatory Summit, which demonstrates just how important it is to have platforms for open discussion with global aviation leaders, to help remove barriers to progress and drive the industry towards an open marketplace,” he adds.

Supported by Qatar Airways, the 2020 CAPA Qatar Aviation, Aeropolitical & Regulatory Summit provided a pivotal platform to continue the discussion on open skies, aviation access and regulation among the most influential and esteemed leaders in the industry. It was attended by over 280 industry leaders, including a stellar line up of speakers that guided the premier discourse on open skies, aviation access, regulation and sustainability.