International Civil Aviation Day

​Diplomats from 54 world powers risked war torn skies to meet in Chicago in 1944 (above), where they drafted the visionary Convention on International Civil Aviation (Chicago Convention) which established ICAO. They formalized in the Convention’s pre-amble that civil aviation should be developed as a tool for world peace and prosperity, and in the decades since aviation’s ability to connect the world’s peoples and cultures and improve the prosperity of local populations has only become more relevant. Today some 10 million passengers take to the skies on 100,000 flights each and every day in aviation’s global network, numbers which are all set to double in the next 15 years based on current forecasts.

MONTRÉAL, 7 DECEMBER 2017 – The Council President and Secretary General of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), Dr. Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu and Dr. Fang Liu respectively, issued a joint statement today in celebration of International Civil Aviation Day, 2017:

The theme which States have adopted through ICAO for International Civil Aviation Day is:


“Working Together to Ensure no Country is Left Behind”

In 2017, this theme helps to highlight the important and very positive socio-economic benefits which States can realize as the number of routes and flights connecting them to the world increases year on year.

ICAO has described in detail how improved aviation connectivity provides a critical foundation for long-term local prosperity, and one which greatly aids governments in their efforts to attain 15 of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted under ‘Agenda 2030’.

We’ve also worked with global aviation’s leading organizations to produce a special Aviation benefits Report which outlines these impacts in objective detail.

Each and every day, commercial aircraft carry more than 10 million passengers on over 100,000 flights, and every year aircraft carry more than half of the world’s 1.4 billion international tourists to their destinations.

These numbers help explain to us how air transport generates 63.5 million jobs worldwide, and why it contributes some 2.7 trillion dollars annually to global GDP.

Air transport’s economic development potential is especially important to many landlocked and small island developing States today, areas where aviation provides nothing less than an economic lifeline by continuously enhancing levels of travel, tourism and trade.

Our No Country Left Behind theme reminds us that all of this air traffic and its associated economic impacts will double in the next 15 years, and that ICAO’s role in helping States to optimize their aviation systems for local and global benefit has therefore never been more relevant.

Cooperation and consensus have always been the great hallmarks of our sector as we have spread our network to every world region, and they will continue to be so in the years ahead as countries work more closely than ever before to keep the world’s civilian skies safe, secure, and operationally and environmentally efficient.

International civil aviation remains our most remarkable example of successful human cooperation and effective global partnership, and with the help of ICAO’s Member States it will remain a shining example to the world of how much we can achieve when we meet our shared challenges together.



Resources for Editors

About ICAO

A specialized agency of the United Nations, ICAO was created in 1944 to promote the safe and orderly development of international civil aviation throughout the world. It sets standards and regulations necessary for aviation safety, security, efficiency, capacity and environmental protection, amongst many other priorities. The Organization serves as the forum for cooperation in all fields of civil aviation among its 192 Member States.


The ICAO International Civil Aviation Day website
Banners, posters and print and web adverts highlighting the 2015-2018 NCLB theme
ICAO’s ‘No Country Left Behind’ (NCLB) initiative

Anthony Philbin
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Twitter: @ICAO

William Raillant-Clark
Communications Officer
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Twitter: @wraillantclark



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