Suggested COVID-19 aviation measures outlined in ICAO’s state letter

ICAO’s state letter draws attention to new measures aimed at ensuring safe aviation operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

ICAO's state letter outlines new measures

International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has issued a new state letter that draws the attention of national governments to new measures aimed at ensuring safe aviation operations during the COVID-19 pandemic, and to a contingency coordination website that ICAO will establish through 31 March 2021.

The letter was issued by ICAO’s Secretary General, Dr. Fang Liu, and comes as more and more global aviation service providers and personnel are facing challenges in terms of maintaining the validity of their certifications, licenses and other types of official operating approvals.

Many of the related challenges are resulting directly from social distancing guidelines, current business closures and other public health measures being taken to mitigate the spread and societal impact of COVID-19.

Liu noted in the letter: “There are approximately 650,000 licensed personnel supporting commercial air transport worldwide. If a fraction of those personnel is affected by the pandemic measures, the potential for the disruption may be significant. In order to facilitate safe operations during these difficult times, I encourage states to be flexible in their approaches while, at the same time, adhering to their obligations under the Convention on International Civil Aviation.”

All ICAO member states were urged in the letter to indicate whether they would be recognising or accepting the validity of certificates and licenses now being affected by the public health measures being implemented in other states.

The letter also drew states’ attention to the specific articles to the Convention on International Civil Aviation relating to certificates and licenses, and urged them to record and inform ICAO of any contraventions or ‘differences’ currently arising against these provisions during the contingency period.

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