Sustained passenger services were introduced by the Farman Company later in 1919 between Paris and Brussels, and shortly afterward Copenhagen, London and North Africa were included in their schedule.
Representatives of five air transport companies from Denmark, Germany, Great Britain, Norway and Sweden meet at The Hague, Netherlands, to sign an agreement to form the International Air Traffic Association (IATA).
Initial goals were to help airlines standardize their paperwork and passenger tickets and to compare technical procedures.
The first truly international agreement on civil aviation is reached when the
Convention Relating to the Regulation of Aerial Navigation is signed on 13 October 1919 at the
Peace Conference held in Paris under the auspices of the League of Nations.
Paris Convention laid down preliminary technical standards for international civil aviation and established the International Commission on Air Navigation (ICAN) – considered by some as the forerunner to ICAO.
This agreement was later superseded by the
Convention on International Civil Aviation, signed at Chicago on 7 December 1944.
The International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations (FIATA) is founded in Vienna.
The Ibero-American Convention (also called the
Madrid Convention) is created under the auspices of Spain, with Portugal and the States of Latin America. This convention differed from the
Paris Convention in that it took separate account of the principle of the equal rights of its members.
The International Radio Convention meets in Washington, D.C. During sessions that lasted into November, participants secure international agreements on the use of certain frequencies by aircraft and airway control stations.
This Convention applied exclusively to commercial aircraft and laid down basic principles and rules for aerial traffic, recognizing that every State has complete and exclusive sovereignty over the airspace above its territory. The Havana Convention was superseded by the Chicago Convention of 1944, which remains in place today.
The International Civil Aeronautics Conference is held in Washington, D.C. Its purpose is to consider worldwide progress in the science and practice of civil aeronautics since the first power-driven flight, and to discuss ways and means of further developing it for the benefit of mankind.
It provides one of the earliest opportunities for an exchange of views on problems pertaining to aircraft in international commerce and trade, and suitably commemorated the twenty-fifth anniversary of the first flight of the Wright brothers.
It also streamline the way international airmail was prepaid and handled, as prior the rules for prepaying international airmail depended only on bilateral treaties.
The Third International Conference on Private Air Law meets in Rome. It adopts the
Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules Relating to Damage Caused by Foreign Aircraft to Third Parties on the Surface and the
Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules Relating to the Precautionary Arrest of Aircraft.
The purpose of these conventions is to ensure adequate compensation for persons who suffer damage caused on the surface by foreign aircraft while limiting to a reasonable degree the extent of liabilities incurred for such damage in order not to hinder the development of international air transport.
This Inter-American Technical Conference on Aviation (Primera Conferencia Técnica Interamericana de Aviación) was attended by 12 national delegations from within the hemisphere, with two observers from Europe; it was sponsored by the Pan-American Union.
Also adopted was the
Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules Relating to the Assistance and Rescue of Aircraft or by Aircraft at Sea.
The Convention on International Civil Aviation (also known as Chicago Convention), is later signed by 52 States at the end of the Chicago Conference in the Grand Ballroom of the Stevens Hotel, 7 December 1944.
The Chicago Convention eventually comes into force on 4 April 1947, superseding the
Convention Relating to the Regulation of Aerial Navigation signed in Paris on 13 October 1919, and the
Pan American Convention on Commercial Aviation signed at Havana on 20 February 1928. It provides the basic framework for the progressive, safe and orderly development of civil aviation on a global scale. Pursuant to the Conference's aim to setup a global interim council, the Convention also serves to establishes the Provisional International Civil Aviation Organization (PICAO; later simply 'ICAO' upon sufficient ratifications being received).
Convention on the International Recognition of Rights in Aircraft, also known as the
Geneva Convention, is adopted in the 2nd Session of the ICAO Assembly. It is the first result of ICAO's work in the field of air law.
Adoption by the ICAO Council of the Standards and Recommended Practices relating to the Facilitation of International Air Transport (Annex 9).
The first meeting is convened by ICAO to standardize the activities of States in the dissemination of aeronautical information.
Its principal results are the development of a draft set of
Procedures for Air Navigation Services - Aeronautical Information Services (PANS-AIS), governing the promulgation and dissemination of Notices to Airmen (NOTAMs) over the international aeronautical telecommunication service.
Also codified are recommendations for the future handling of aeronautical information problems.
A new ICAO alphabet is implemented (Annex 10) for Aeronautical Telecommunications in civil aviation.
The Convention also deals with a host of related matters such as apportionment of claims, financial security requirements, jurisdiction and enforcement of judgments. The Convention of 1952 was further revised by the Montreal Protocol of 1978, involving sixteen main amendments to the Convention, including an increase in the liability limits expressed in Special Drawing Rights.
The ICAO Air Navigation Commission is established to assist the ICAO Council with its assessments of technical materials and policies.
Adoption by the ICAO Council of the Standards and Recommended Practices relating to Aeronautical Information Services to the Convention for the promulgation of information essential to the safety, regularity and efficiency of air navigation (Annex 15).
Conference on Co-ordination of Air Transport in Europe (CATE), is formally constituted by ICAO.
The principal objectives of ECAC are to promote the continued development of a safe, efficient and sustainable European air transport system and to harmonize civil aviation policies and practices among its Member States.
ECAC's creation was partially facilitated through earlier discussions at the 1954
Strasbourg Conference on the Coordination of Transport in Europe.
A Diplomatic Conference is held in The Hague, the Netherlands, to review and update the liability provisions of the
Warsaw Convention of 1929, relating to international carriage by air, in the light of the rapid expansion of air transport services throughout the world and the prevailing economic conditions.
The Conference agreed to double the limit of liability for each passenger to about USD 20,000, and substantially simplified the rules pertaining to the documents of carriage, i.e., passenger ticket, baggage check and air waybill.
The agreed additions and amendments to the Warsaw Convention, contained in
The Hague Protocol and signed on 28 September 1955, came into force on 1 August 1963.
Multilateral Agreement on Commercial Rights of Non-Scheduled Air Services in Europe is opened for signature. This provides liberal access for certain categories of non-scheduled operations (ECAC).
The principal ASECNA objectives are to provide professional air traffic control, flight information, aeronautical telecommunication and meteorological services to its fifteen African Member States, with the active involvement of the French Government, so as to ensure the safety and efficient operation of air traffic throughout the West African region and Madagascar.
In 1972, ASECNA receives the prestigious ICAO Edward Warner Award for the efficiency and quality of air navigation services provided within the region, covering a total airspace of some 8 million square kilometres and twenty-four international airports.
The Convention on
European Organization for the Safety of Air Navigation, commonly called
EUROCONTROL is signed in Brussels, Belgium, by six European States (Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom). Its purpose is to develop a coherent and coordinated air traffic control system in Europe.
Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Civil Aviation is signed in Montreal on 23 September. It defines a wide spectrum of unlawful acts against the safety of civil aviation which ICAO member States undertake to make punishable by severe penalties.
Diplomatic Conference is convened by ICAO to review and update the provisions of the
Warsaw Convention of 1929, as amended by
The Hague Protocol of 1955. Four Protocols were adopted and signed which increased the carrier's limit of liability to SDR (Special Drawing Rights) 100,000 (about USD 130,000) per passenger in international carriage by air, and considerably simplified the documentary requirements relating to international cargo traffic.
The introduction of the
Airline Deregulation Act in the United States, which removed statutory control on domestic airline operations at the end of 1978, leads to fundamental changes in the structure of domestic, as well as international air services. Similar steps to liberalize air transport services are henceforth taken by other industrialized countries.
Second ICAO Air Transport Conference, held in Montreal from 12 to 28 February, formulates common and multilateral approaches to solving worldwide capacity regulation of international commercial air services and the mechanisms for establishing international fares and rates.
inter alia, called for the continuance of multilateral (albeit, more liberalized) solutions in response, primarily, to an
open skies policy then being introduced by the United States. While ICAO had been founded to deal essentially with the technical issues and problems of international civil aviation, this conference signified its new involvement in the economic and commercial fields in light of the widening impacts of sectoral deregulation.
In the light of rapid technological developments, ICAO convened a
Special Communications/Operations (COM/OPS) Divisional Meeting in the spring of 1995, which addressed all major principles of air navigation and recommended a global strategy for implementation of non-visual aids to approach and landing operations over the next 20 years.
25th Session (Extraordinary) of the ICAO Assembly approves unanimously in Resolution A25-1 an amendment to the
Convention on International Civil Aviation incorporating an explicit recognition that the use of weapons against civil aircraft is prohibited.
The ICAO Council adopts the
Code of Conduct for the Regulation and Operation of Computer Reservation Systems to ensure that computer reservation systems (CRSs) are used in a fair, non-discriminatory and transparent manner. The principal objectives of the CRS Code of Conduct are: to avoid the misuse of these systems and unfair competition between airlines; to protect the interests of the consumers of air transport services; and to encourage increasing participation by developing nations' airlines in CRS activities.
The Colloquium provides a framework and basis for the
Fourth ICAO Worldwide Air Transport Conference held in 1994, and identifies a need for ICAO to develop future regulatory arrangements that would effectively support the rapidly changing requirements and conditions of international air transport.
The United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), commonly known as the
Earth Summit, held in Rio de Janeiro in June 1992, adopts an intergovernmental Convention on the reduction of global warming by placing limits on all
greenhouse gas emissions.
29th Session of the ICAO Assembly endorses a blueprint for a global satellite-based
Communications, Navigation and Surveillance/ Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) system concept to replace existing line-of-sight systems. At the same time, air traffic control systems around the world were begin to be updated as part of the evolution process to a global ATM system.
At the launch ceremony, Dr. Assad Kotaite, President of the ICAO Council, underlined the importance of ICAO's Strategic Action Plan and emphasized that in civil aviation, globalization, commercialization of government services providers, liberalization of economic regulation, increasing environmental controls and the emergence of new technologies, all have significant implications for safety and security. Dr. Kotaite also stressed that addressing these issues effectively requires an unprecedented level of cooperation among countries and a corresponding level of global coordination that extends beyond borders.
European Ministers of Transport sign the revised and modernized
Convention governing the new organizational structure, functions and modus operandi of
EUROCONTROL—European Organization for the Safety of Air Navigation. Following ratification by governments concerned, it replaces the Convention drawn up by the original eight Member States in 1960 and provide the legal basis for the future strategy agreed upon in February 1997 by thirty-six Member States of the
European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC).
The objective of this unique ICAO Conference is to bring together all partners in the worldwide implementation of CNS/ATM systems around two main issues, i.e., the financing mechanisms and the institutional frameworks required to move the projects forward.
The Conference produces a range of recommendations to facilitate the early and successful implementation of the CNS/ATM systems concept, notably as regards the financial, management, legal, technical cooperation and training aspects.
In conjunction with the
32nd Session of the ICAO Assembly, an International Conference on Air Law adopts the
Protocol on the Authentic Six-Language Textof the Convention on International Civil Aviation. This embodies the Chinese text of the Chicago Convention and puts the Chinese language on par with the other languages of the Organization, i.e., English, French, Spanish, Russian and Arabic.
ICAO International Diplomatic Conference on Air Law was held in Montreal, with the goal of modernizing the
Warsaw Convention System that dates back to 1929 and provides low compensation limits for victims of air accidents. There was also a definite need to simplify the documentary requirements related to passengers, baggage and cargo and so as to take advantage of modern information technologies.
The Conference adopted a new
Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules for International Carriage by Air, to replace the 70 year-old system comprising six different international legal instruments of private international law, and to provide, for years to come, an adequate level of compensation for those involved in international air accidents.
A major feature of the new legal instrument is the concept of unlimited liability in the case of death or injury to passengers, which introduces a two-tier system. The first tier provides for strict liability up to 100,000 Special Drawing Rights (SDRs), a figure equivalent to about USD 135,000, irrespective of the carrier's fault. The second tier is based on presumption of fault of the carrier and has no limit of liability. The Convention also simplifies the system of claims for lost, damaged, destroyed or delayed baggage and cargo.
At the end of this historic Conference, a total of 52 ICAO Member States signed the Convention, which required ratification by thirty ICAO Contracting States before its entry into force. When this occurred on 4 November 2003, ICAO Council President Assad Kotaite had remarked:
"In developing the new Montreal Convention, we were able to reach a delicate balance between the needs and interests of all partners in international civil aviation: States, the traveling public, air carriers and the transport industry. Victims of international air accidents and their families will be better protected and compensated under the new Montreal Convention, which modernizes and consolidates a seventy-five year old system of international instruments of private international law into one legal instrument."
The Convention and Protocol provide for the financing and leasing of aircraft equipment and the creation of an international registry for international security rights in aircraft, aircraft engines and helicopters. The new legal instrument sets up a system of rules designed to facilitate asset-based financing and leasing of aircraft and to enhance the availability of credit to air carriers at a lower cost.
The 11th of September 2001 marks a turning point in international civil aviation, when a group of suicide terrorists hijacks four commercial jetliners – two American Airlines and two United Airlines Boeing 757 and 767 aircraft. Two of these aircraft were flown into and deliberately destroyed the World Trade Center Towers in New York, one hit and deliberately destroyed part of the Pentagon in Washington, DC, and the fourth aircraft crashed in a field near Pittsburgh, PA, evidently after some passengers tried to apprehend the terrorists.
As a result of these terrorist acts, 214 passengers and 33 crewmembers were killed on the four aircraft (excluding 19 perpetrators). In addition, 2,658 and 125 innocent civilians, representing many nationalities, lost their lives at the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington, DC, respectively, causing great human suffering and incredible devastation. This tragic event symbolized, for the first time since the dawn of the aviation age nearly 100 years ago, the first use of civil aircraft as weapons of mass destruction.
In his address to the 33rd Session of the ICAO General Assembly, held in Montreal in October 2001, Dr. Assad Kotaite, President of the ICAO Council, stated:
"These terrorist attacks represent the greatest threat ever to civil aviation security…" and that "…it will be ICAO's primary objective to identify the means by which this new threat can be eradicated and public confidence can be restored in an aviation system that remains fundamentally safe, secure and efficient."
The ICAO 33rd Assembly unanimously adopted a Resolution to hold accountable with severity those who misuse civil aircraft as weapons of destruction, including those responsible for organizing such acts or for aiding, supporting or harboring the perpetrators. Furthermore, the Assembly directed the ICAO Council to convene as soon as possible an international High-level Conference on Aviation Security, with the objective of preventing, combating and eradicating acts of terrorism against civil aviation.
The Assembly and the ICAO Council also recognized that the fight against terrorism is an incredibly complex and arduous task, involving an enormous diversity of unforeseeable events. It was furthermore acknowledged by participants that it would require a global effort and the cooperation of
all ICAO Member States to ensure continued aviation safety and the effective security of international and domestic civil aviation.
The events of 11 September, 2001 brought about major and far-reaching changes in the operating environment of the air transport industry. With airlines and airports now adapting to the impact on security, revenues and costs, the industry focus moved more than ever on providing maximum safety and security to the users of the world air transport system.
The Conference agrees on a comprehensive action plan in response to the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001 and affirms that a globally-effective aviation security system imposes a collective responsibility on all ICAO Member States.
At the heart of the global strategy was the introduction of mandatory security oversight audits to evaluate the ability of States to regulate their respective domains on the basis of applicable ICAO Security Standards. The main objectives of the new programme, like the Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP) launched in 1999, is to identify and correct deficiencies in the implementation of acceptable standards.
Convention on Compensation for Damage Caused by Aircraft to Third Parties.
These two drafts are considered and adopted at the International Conference on Air Law on Compensation for Damage Caused by Aircraft to Third Parties Arising from Acts of Unlawful Interference or from General Risks, held at Montreal.
ICAO signs a memoranda of cooperation providing a framework for enhanced cooperation with various regional commissions and organizations, including but not limited to the African Union (AU), the European Union (EU), the Arab Civil Aviation Commission (ACAC), the African Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC), the European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC), and the Latin American Civil Aviation Commission (LACAC).
Annex 19 also supports an industry-wide evolution towards a new and less punitive safety management culture, one which encourages more frequent and accurate reporting on safety accidents and incidents to aid current and future aviation safety risk mitigation.