Starting in fiscal 2018, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport will increase the number of applicants admitted to the Civil Aviation College to about 108 from the current 72 to meet growing aviation demand and deal with a shortage of pilots. The plan will be included in an economic package that the Cabinet will endorse on August 2.
The government has set a goal of increasing the number of foreign visitors to 40 million by 2020. To accommodate this number, it is estimated that about 380 pilots will need to be newly trained every year. Many of the existing pilots will reach retirement age by around 2030 and a serious shortage of pilots is projected. (Abridged)