The European and North Atlantic Office (EUR/NAT) held the EUR/NAT Directors General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) Virtual Meeting on 8 June 2020, with the objective to inform about the ICAO Council's Aviation Recovery Task Force (CART) recently adopted Report, Recommendations and 'Take-off' Guidelines. With the participation of ICAO Secretary General, Dr. Fang Liu, the ICAO CART Chairperson and Permanent Representative of France to the ICAO Council, Ambassador Philippe Bertoux, and the ICAO Chief Aviation Medicine Section, Dr. Ansa Jordaan, the meeting is part of the activities designed to support the 56 EUR/NAT States, to which the EUR/NAT Office is accredited, in this time of crisis and to enable them to be best equipped to restart the international air transport and recover from COVID-19.
Ms. Silvia Gehrer, EUR/NAT Regional Director, highlighted that "the ongoing EUR/NAT Technical Assistance Programme and implementation support will be expanded and adapted to respond to current urgent needs of the restarting and recovery phases and in alignment with the ICAO implementation initiatives", Ms. Gehrer continued, "our focus will be on three areas: support on the implementation of measures and recommendations contained in the CART Report and the 'Take-off' guidance; the coordination of the exchange of information and harmonisation amongst States, and monitoring and reporting of progress made by States in their implemention".
"We are determined to provide the necessary tools and support so that the EUR/NAT States know and understand how to best implement the CART measures; whether using this open channel of communication via our DGCA Virtual Meetings, or through the planned webinars and other mechanisms that we will be announcing in the coming weeks."
The virtual meeting had a total of 108 participants, with forty-one (41) States, five (5) European organizations (EC, EASA, EUROCONTROL, ECAC and CANSO), IAC, ACAO and two (2) industry organizations (IATA and ACI). Interventions from the Chairman and Vice Chairman from the EUR/NAT DGCA Working Group, Mr. Luis Ribeiro, DG CAA Portugal and Mr. Levan Karanadze, DG CAA Georgia respectively, confirmed and highlighted the role of ICAO as extremely important for the 56 EUR/NAT Member States, covering a region from the North Pole to the Sahara Desert and from the Eastern Coast of North America to the Bering Strait. Managing the flow of information at present times is key to promote a common and clear understanding of the principles, recommendations and set of measures from the CART Report and 'Take-off' Guidance to be implemented both globally and also regionally-harmonized. The participation and interventions of Dr. Fang Liu, Ambassador Philippe Bertoux, and Dr. Ansa Jordaan, as well as the active participation of industry organizations during the call was much appreciated.
The full CART Report and Guidelines are available as part of ICAO's COVID-19 platform, and also on the EUR/NAT opening webpage. They will be regularly reviewed and updated based on the latest data and information received from all stakeholders.