Dr. Jonathan De Giovanni, Partner at WDM International, shall be Chairing the 6th European Corporate Aviation Summit (‘ECAS’)

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On Thursday 8th of March 2018, the 6th European Corporate Aviation Summit  (‘ECAS’) will be held at The Palace Hotel in Sliema, Malta.

WDM International shall be sponsoring the event and Firm Partner, Dr. Jonathan De Giovanni, will be chairing the event.

Dr. De Giovanni has delivered various seminars in the field, and also delivers lectures at the University of Malta, to law students, on the fiscal aspects of aircraft registration. His field of professional practice includes advising clients in relation to aircraft registration, and structures involving aircraft ownership, financing and leasing and tax.


Corporate aviation is a rapidly evolving and dynamic sector, which is playing a crucial part of the European transport network. Europe, already the world’s 3rd largest aviation market and with more than 900 million passengers per year, is a key player in aircraft design and manufacture in an industry that supports over 5 million jobs, directly and indirectly, across Europe.

Malta, already renowned as a global shipping centre with the largest ship registry in Europe and the sixth largest in the world, has been developing a highly-attractive jurisdiction for the business aviation industry – following the Aircraft Registration Act 2010 coming into force and amendments thereto becoming law in November 2016.

The Act has allowed for the implementation of the Cape Town Convention and the Aircraft Protocol which, in addition to attracting asset-based finance, has ensured a flexibility in approach to such contemporary aircraft ownership trends for business and private jets, such as fractional ownership and ownership through trust structures. Moreover, the amendments intended to improve certain aspects of the Act, affect four categories, general amendments to the ARA, Insolvency issues, Enforcement issues; and Amendments to other laws.

Even now, despite the challenging market conditions facing the global shipping industry, Malta’s maritime sector has retained its position as Europe’s number one flag-state and 6th largest in the world. Up to the end of August, more than 8,000 ships with a combined gross tonnage of 74 million were flying the Maltese flag.  Recently, Valletta Cruise Port was named the Top-Rated Mediterranean Cruise Destination in Cruise Critic’s 2017 Cruisers’ Choice Destination Awards and crowned ‘Best Terminal Operator’ by industry publication Cruise Insight.

Now, over 100 years since the first aircraft flew over Malta, aviation remains particularly important to Malta’s continuing success – acting as the foundation for our burgeoning tourism sector, as well as underpinning the connectivity of our archipelago – so important in ensuring we are seen as a key location from which to conduct international business.

Malta’s economy has enjoyed strong growth over the last few years and has been the subject of continued overseas investment. Added to the increase in the number of companies “passporting” into Malta – we are seeing year on year growth in the numbers of high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth individuals, basing themselves from our islands and demanding the flexibility that aircraft ownership and other solutions offered by the corporate aviation industry can provide to those who are “cash-rich but time-poor”.

For manufacturers, operators, and interested organisations, the summit will offer a unique opportunity to delve into the aspects affecting the future of the corporate aviation industry. The summit will allow attendees to learn about the potential use of Blockchain in the aviation sector, the regulation of airport slots, and the legal aspects of buying and selling business aircraft, amongst other interesting topics.

Confirmed expert speakers include the Ivan Veretennikov, Sales Director at ArcosJet, and Glen Heavens, Chairman at Synergy Aviation, amongst other directors and managers of companies that are involved in the aviation industry – from law firms to aircraft management. This will provide a great opportunity to network with leading experts in the industry.

Please contact Dr. Jonathan De Giovanni today to see how we can assist you through utilising our expertise and experience in the business aviation industry.