Need For Local Pilots Set to Rise In Cambodia’s Developing Aviation Industry

Gareth Johnson

Cambodia’s aviation industry is set to witness strong growth in the coming years as new airlines, including Air Asia, enter the market, and tourism numbers are predicted to reach pre-pandemic levels. With the increased demand for flights, the need for local pilots in the industry is also expected to rise dramatically.

Cambodia’s aviation industry is led by Cambodia Angkor Air, along with other carriers like Cambodian Airways, Lanmei Airlines, and Sky Angkor Airlines. These airlines currently have relatively small fleets, with Cambodia Angkor Air boasting five planes, and Cambodian Airways having six planes. However, with the launch of Air Asia Cambodia this year, the number of airlines and the range of destinations served are expected to increase dramatically.

Read more: Novation Academy aims to turn Cambodia into flight training hub

Demand for pilots set to rise

As the industry expands, the demand for pilots is also set to rise. Currently, most pilots working in Cambodia are from other countries that either have experienced flight training schemes or have a richer culture of providing pilots. However, this is expected to change as more local pilots are trained to meet the growing demand.

According to Kirill Bratchenko, Managing Director of Novation Academy, before the establishment of their flight school, potential Khmer pilots needed to train in other ASEAN nations, which incurred extra costs and limited opportunities. However, the expansion of the local industry and the entry of new players like Air Asia are creating opportunities for Khmer pilots to train and work in the Kingdom.

Novation Academy is the first flight school in Cambodia and aims to be the best in the region.

The Cambodian government is also keen to promote the aviation industry and has provided support to flight schools like Novation Academy. The Civil Aviation Authority of Cambodia has offered some of the most open skies within the region, making Cambodia an attractive destination for trainee pilots.

Read more: How to Get a Commercial Pilots License in Cambodia

While training to become a pilot is not cheap, with estimates of around $80,000, qualified commercial pilots can earn between $150,000 – $400,000 a year, making it an attractive long-term career option. Moreover, in Asia alone, it is estimated that around 200,000 new pilots will be needed in the coming years, providing career opportunities for those qualified in Cambodia not limited to the Kingdom.

Novation Academy offers pilot training

Novation Academy, which offers pilot training in Cambodia, aims to train Khmer pilots who can meet the demand of the local industry. Krill Bratchenko, the Managing Director of Novation Academy, said that the support from the government and the demand for more regional pilots makes Cambodia an ideal place for those seeking to embark on a career as a pilot.

Moreover, Cambodia does not have restrictions on trainee pilots flying domestically, unlike some countries like Vietnam, making it an even more attractive destination for pilot training.

As, Cambodia’s aviation industry is set to experience significant growth in the coming years, creating opportunities for Khmer pilots to train and work in the Kingdom. The support from the government and the lack of restrictions on trainee pilots flying domestically makes Cambodia an ideal place for pilot training.

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