NEW YORK - The capital markets swung its doors wide open to the aviation industry last year, allowing close to $5 billion in issuance. Still, the securitization market could go a lot further if it could allow more flexibility within the deal structures, said panelists at the Third Annual UBS Transportation Structured Debt Conference held here last week.

In an afternoon session on capital markets issues for the aviation sector, several panelists objected to the often rigid nature of aviation securitization structures. Aviation Capital Group, a subsidiary of Pacific LifeCorp, does not get financing directly from its parent company. Therefore, the firm has tapped the aircraft ABS market three times since 2000, raising $3.5 billion, said Richard Baudouin, a managing director there.

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