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Cooperation and assistance key to enhancing safety in ICAO’s Europe and North Atlantic Region

Montreal, Canada - During ICAO Regional Safety Management Symposium in Tallinn (Estonia)

Addressing the ICAO Regional Safety Management Symposium in Tallinn, Estonia, the Secretary General of the UN specialized agency for civil aviation stressed the need to enhance cooperation and assistance in order to address safety issues affecting States in its Europe and North Atlantic (EURNAT) Region, an area that covers 56 countries stretching from Greenland to Kamchatka. Pointing to ICAO’s Global Aviation Safety Plan (GASP) and the European Regional Aviation Safety Group (RASG-EUR) mechanisms, Fang Liu underscored that the foundations and targets for safety-focused cooperation are already in place. She stressed the importance of the support from ICAO’s EURNAT Regional Office in terms of implementing these efforts, and highlighted the role of ICAO’s Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP) in safety prioritization. Stressing that continuous efforts by all ICAO States towards aviation safety had resulted in 2016 achieving the lowest ever accident rate, with 2.1 accidents per million departures, Liu noted that there was nonetheless no room for complacency even among EURNAT States with “mature safety oversight capabilities". She reiterated ICAO’s unwavering commitment to supporting and enabling States’ safety efforts, as well as her confidence that further progress can be achieved. In addition to her delivery of the Symposium’s opening address, her mission to Tallinn resulted in high-level meetings with Estonia’s Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure, Kadri Simson, and Henrik Hololei, the European Commission’s Director General for Mobility and Transport. These meetings contributed to the momentum for enhanced cooperation between ICAO and the European Commission and highlighted the opportunities for leveraging aviation to advance socio-economic development throughout the European Union and in Estonia in particular.

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