The ICAO EUR/NAT Office held the EUR/NAT Directors General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) virtual meeting on harmonised regional operational guidance for the restart of civil aviation on 17 September 2020.
54 representatives from 30 States, European Commission, EASA and EUROCONTROL were informed on the progress of the CART implementation and were presented with the global and regional activities designed to support the 56 EUR/NAT States to enable them to be best equipped to restart international air transport and recover from the COVID-19 crisis.
The ICAO Secretary General, Dr. Fang Liu, and the ICAO Regional Director of the EUR/NAT Office, Silvia Gehrer, opened the meeting, while the Chairman of the EUR/NAT DGCA Meeting and DG CAA Portugal, Luis Ribeiro, led the meeting with interventions from the DGs CAA of Austria, Belarus, Finland, France, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Slovakia and Spain and IATA.
The meeting noted that further to the publication of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Council Aviation Recovery Taskforce (CART) report on 27 May 2020, and the accompanying Take-Off guidance for Air Travel through the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Public Health Crisis, on 30 June 2020, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) updated the EASA-ECDC COVID-19 Aviation Health Safety Protocol in order to ensure alignment with the ICAO CART report and guidance.
The first issue of this Protocol was published on 21 May 2020 prior to the ICAO CART report. This Protocol provides States, operators and passengers with a safe, clear and harmonised set of guidelines which had been elaborated jointly by aviation and health authorities.
The meeting agreed that the ICAO EUR/NAT Regional Office and EASA should invite States, through a joint letter, to implement the EASA-ECDC COVID-19 Aviation Health Safety Protocol as an aligned acceptable means of compliance to implement the ICAO CART report and guidance in the EUR/NAT Region in line with the most recent evidence available.
ICAO has established a COVID-19 Response and Recovery platform https://www.icao.int/covid/Pages/default.aspx and the COVID-19 Response and Recovery Implementation Centre (CRRIC) to assist States in monitoring, documenting and reporting their progress in the implementation of the CART recommendations: https://portal.icao.int/CRRIC/Pages/default.aspx. Each Member State has been invited to nominate CRRIC Focal Points to enable the coordination within States of the reporting on the implementation of the CART Recommendations.
ICAO is providing guidance material for public health measures through the CAPSCA Programme https://www.icao.int/covid/Pages/default.aspx and technical assistance activities to support the States through the regional CAPSCA EUR.
Health safety promotion material is also made available by EASA to assist national competent authorities in the implementation of the Protocol. EASA has also established a COVID-19 Aviation Industry Charter programme to promote the implementation of the Protocol and to monitor its effectiveness.
Finally, it was noted that in close coordination with the ICAO EUR/NAT Regional Office, EASA and ECDC will continue to review and update the Protocol in line with the industry feedback received through the Charter programme and the latest scientific evidence that becomes available over time. The ICAO EUR/NAT Office and EASA will continue to work together on information sharing and capacity building activities to further support the States.
The ICAO presentations are available at:
Shorter version of the web- link