The Pilot Shortage … In Australia


Reports of a pilot shortage in Australia suggest similarity to concerns about the U.S. economy in that it may get worse before it gets better. Down under, aviation experts point to a lack of experienced instructors available to teach new pilots interested in entering the profession. The head of the aviation academy at the University of South Australia, Stephen Phillips, says CASA’s own figures (which are not yet publicly available) show that the pool of advanced instructors shrank by roughly 10 percent during the last fiscal year. Going forward, Phillips expects a stagnation in the number of instructors while he sees a need for 7300 new pilots by 2026. Phillips hopes to see scholarships subsidies and increased salaries rise to match the need. While big airlines face the test of high fuel prices and have slowed their recruitment, that lull is not expected to last and some say the current situation has only brought about a shift in demand toward smaller operators.