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Emirates, Airbus and IATA Collaborate on CBTA Training

4 June 2024

Dubai –  The International Air Transport Association (IATA), Emirates, and Airbus have joined forces to deliver a Competency-Based Training and Assessment (CBTA) program for the Airbus A350 type rating, as Emirates prepares for the delivery of its fleet of 65 A350s from mid-2024. An initial cohort of 256 pilots will be trained as part of the new course at Emirates’ Training college in Dubai starting from July 2024.

The joint work combines the respective expertise of the three organizations.

  • IATA will focus on program design using its published guidance for CBTA
  • Airbus will contribute knowledge of the aircraft along with its own CBTA experience
  • Emirates will use its CBTA training and operational experience

This collaboration will create and deliver the first A350 type rating training in full alignment with the latest International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) standards for CBTA training and with the best practices contained in the IATA CBTA Guide for Flight Crew Training.

“Combining the expertise of Emirates, Airbus and IATA to design and deliver A350 type rating training is a unique opportunity. Our joint aim is to fully utilize the benefits of CBTA to qualify the pilots on the A350 in the most efficient and effective way possible. And by doing it together all three organizations will also gain valuable experience that can strengthen their other training activities,” said Nick Careen, IATA’s SVP for Operations, Safety and Security.

“Emirates uses cutting-edge training programs so our pilots are among the most competent flight crew in the world. The tailored CBTA program for the A350 supports the integration of 65 new A350 aircraft, with 1,000 pilots set to complete the A350 Type Rating course. This commitment enhances passenger safety and comfort, reflecting our unwavering dedication to the highest service standards,” said Capt. Bader Al Marzooqi, Emirates’ Senior Vice President, Flight Training.

“The A350 is a state-of-the-art aircraft, which requires equally advanced training solutions. Our partnership with IATA and Emirates ensures that Emirates pilots receive the most comprehensive and effective training, supporting the smooth entry into service of the A350 worldwide,” said Capt. Stéphan Labrucherie, Airbus Head of Flight Training Worldwide.

About CBTA

As the demand for pilots grows worldwide, efficient and effective training methodologies are evermore critical. CBTA has proven itself a successful solution to this need. By using real-world training scenarios, it focuses on the competences needed to manage complex combinations of operational and environmental situations that crew face. An example of such a scenario could be landing in a high-density traffic area in adverse weather conditions.


Gaining the benefits and efficiencies of CBTA training is a longstanding industry objective. For flight crew, IATA is supporting this with its CBTA Guide for Flight Crew Training, which is fully aligned with ICAO CBTA standards and includes specific libraries for Airlines/Operators and Training Organizations.

IATA also focuses on CBTA training in support of the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations. The IATA CBTA Center supports organizations across the aviation industry, including operators, Civil Aviation Authorities, and training organizations, in developing the capabilities and resources for dangerous goods training programs. It also offers CBTA training specialized for various airline functions from ground handlers to passenger agents, load planning, crew and others.