When he addressed the Turkey-Asia Civil Aviation Conference held in Antalya in April, ICAO Council President Dr. Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu highlighted the UN aviation agency’s “natural leadership role in bringing together the parties and players in aligning their respective objectives and planning with those of our 192 Member States.”
President Aliu also noted to the event participants and other high level officials in attendance, which included H.E. Burhan Kayatürk, Head of the Turkish Parliamentary Group in the Asian Parliamentary Assembly, MP, Grand National Assembly of Turkey, H.E. Ahmet Arslan, Minister of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications for the Republic of Turkey and Mr. Bahri Kesici, Acting Director General of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation of the Turkish Republic, that if governments wished to fortify and optimize their air transport systems, “the most important step they can take is to strengthen their ICAO compliance.”
“This is a critical message, and one which is at the heart of ICAO’s many assistance and capacity building efforts being coordinated globally today under our No Country Left Behind initiative,” President Aliu underscored. “And it is an important one to keep in mind as you establish the foundations here for more meaningful and profitable aviation connectivity between your countries.”
Many ICAO Member States globally are working with great determination today to improve their ICAO compliance and optimize the significant socio-economic benefits which arise from new direct aviation connections with international destinations. In establishing its new platform for improved connectivity between European and Asian States, Turkey is seeking to leverage its position as a natural gateway to facilitate the increased traffic and trade.
“There is no doubt that your work here is important to a variety of critical economic activities, for Turkey and its European and Asian neighbours,” President Aliu emphasized. “And there is also no doubt that air transport will continue to be essential to economic growth and prosperity for your citizens and businesses for many years to come.”
He went on to summarize the key policies and priorities for States as they work to improve their air transport sector performance, in addition to its economic benefits, highlighting current challenges and ICAO programmes in areas such as international safety collaboration, cybersecurity, emerging low- and high-altitude operations for drones and new aircraft types, and the investment and development best practices which have emerged from recent ICAO World Aviation Forums.
In closing, President Aliu also noted that he had “been greatly encouraged to see that your discussions here will touch upon the importance of training and related human resources capacity-building to the sustainability of your broader objectives.”
“We will need more and better skilled aviation personnel and managers in the years to come, and we need to work harder at managing their balanced movement between countries and employers.”
President Aliu was accompanied on his mission to Turkey by the Second and Third Vice-Presidents of the ICAO Council Messrs. Musa Shuaibu Nuhu and Germinal Sarasqueta Oller respectively. Also joining him was the Representative of Turkey on the Council, Ambassador Ali Riza Çolak, the President of the Air Navigation Commission Mr. Claude Hurley and senior ICAO officials including Mr. Stephen Creamer, Director of the ICAO Air Navigation Bureau, Mr. Meshesha Belayneh, Deputy Director of ICAO’s Technical Co-operation Bureau and Chief of the Global Aviation Training Office and the Regional Director of the ICAO European and North Atlantic Office Mr. Luis Fonseca de Almeida.
The two-day Conference was succeeded by the Eurasia Airshow 2018 which ended 29 April .