60th Special Meeting of ECAC's Directors General
Between 1 and 5 September 2011 Director General of the Civil Aviation Agency of the Republic of Macedonia Mr. Dejan Mojsoski Ph.D. attended the 60th Special meeting of ECAC's Directors General. The meeting was organized by the Italian Ente Nazionale per l'Aviazione Civile in Taormina, Italy.
The meeting was attended by Mr. Raymond Benjamin, Secretary General of ICAO, Mr. Henrik Hololei, Head of Cabinet of Vice-President Siim Kallas of the European Commission, Mr. Patrick Goudou, Executive Director of EASA, Mr. David McMillan, Director General of EUROCONTROL, senior representatives of ICAO and the JAA TO, and European members of the ICAO Council, and worked though a substantial agenda. The centrepiece of the meeting was a strategic discussion of the future of European civil aviation, in the course of which Directors General adopted a number of strategic orientations which will help steer and prioritise ECAC's activities going forward. These orientations will in the first place inform the preparation of ECAC's work programme and budget for the 2013-2015 triennium.
Important matters addressed in these strategic discussions included the need to increase the resilience of the aviation sector and ensure its business continuity in the face of crisis situations; to enhance the capabilities of national civil aviation administrations through promotion of training initiatives which will ensure that a sufficient number of trained aviation professionals continue to be available; and to give a high priority to innovation and research to ensure that the European aviation industry retains its competitiveness in international markets. With regard to air traffic management there was acknowledgement that the required investment in system capacity enhancement would require the exercise of political will, without which the gains won through the deregulation of the airline industry might be placed at risk.
Directors General recognised ECAC's essential role in supporting its Member States in the implementation of European requirements by conducting capacity building activities and thus maintaining unity between its EU and non-EU States, and in providing a Forum for open discussions at the policy level. The importance of the external relations dimension of ECAC's activity was also underlined, together with the need in this context for the organisation to build on its core strengths as a body able to bring together 44 European States and engage with other regional organisations and groups.
Discussion of how a consistent high standard of safety can be maintained on a pan-European basis saw an emphasis placed on data-sharing and on greater transparency around safety performance, based on adherence to the "just culture" principle and the development and use of robust safety performance indicators.
The strategic discussion in Taormina also addressed aviation security, and the need to better incorporate passenger facilitation considerations into the framing of security measures. In the environmental field, ECAC's support was confirmed for ICAO Resolution A37/19, concerning the reduction of green house gas emissions from international aviation, and Member States agreed to move quickly and positively in this area, including through the preparation and timely submission to ICAO of State Action Plans for such reductions.