The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) is expanding its membership to include for the first time non-US-based aircraft builders. The move is designed to strengthen links and influence international regulatory authorities, says the Washington-based trade association.

New members are Canada's Bombardier, Embraer of Brazil and Europe's Dassault and Piaggio.

GAMA president and chief executive officer Ed Bolan says: "We found ourselves evolving from an organisation working just with the FAA [US Federal Aviation Administration] to expanding our international efforts with organisations like the European JAA [Joint Aviation Authorities], and ICAO [International Civil Aviation Organisation]."

Bolan says general aviation has become a global industry with products that are designed, manufactured, delivered and operated throughout the world. "It is a logical step to include manufacturers which can influence not only the regulatory processes but also improve the operating infrastructure for business aircraft across their respective regions and better promote and enhance our industry around the world," he adds.

The Latin American Business Aviation Convention and Exhibition (LABACE), planned for January in Sao Paulo, Brazil, has been rescheduled for 13-15 March at the same venue. Organisers say the postponement was due to the country's presidential elections next month and the anticipated formation of a new civil aviation authority in the region.

Source: Flight International