The Unmanned Aircraft Systems Advisory Group (UAS-AG), established in 2015 to support the Secretariat in developing guidance material and expedite the development of provisions to be used by States to regulate unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), with its industry and international partners, as well as the Member States, has been instrumental in providing support to the global aviation safety collaboration.
The 39th Assembly, held from 27 September to 7 October 2016 requested that ICAO develop a global baseline of provisions and guidance material for the proper harmonization of regulations on UAS that remain outside of the international instrument flight rules (IFR) framework. This request was based on three factors: the need to maintain safety for manned aircraft; the desire for harmonization of domestic UAS regulations; and the need for assurance from the leading global aviation standards-making body that the best options for UAS operations were being considered and recommended.
In order to accomplish this new tasking, the UAS‑AG began a second, larger phase of work (Phase II). The UAS-AG continues to serve as a technical body, working under the management of the ICAO Secretariat. It reviewed and assessed submissions from States, industry and academia to ICAO's Requests for Information (RFIs). Based upon the assessments, ICAO invited various submitters to present their information to a global audience at DRONE ENABLE, ICAO's Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Industry Symposium, Montréal, Canada 22 to 23 September 2017. The second DRONE ENABLE Symposium will take place in Chengdu, China in September 2018.
The UAS-AG Phase II will support the Secretariat in guiding ICAO Member States with establishing a common global framework for, and core boundaries of, unmanned aircraft system traffic management (UTM), in order to allow further UTM developments to focus on better defined issues, whether technical, operational or legal.