T&T Civil Aviation Authority Bill
Tuesday, May 02, 2000
to encourage the development of airways, airports and air navigational facilities;
to meet global needs for safe, regular, efficient air transport;
to prevent economic waste caused by unreasonable competition;
to ensure that the rights of contracting states are fully respected with regard to the operation of international airlines;
to avoid discrimination between contracting states; to promote safety of flight in international air navigation; and
to promote the general development of all aspects of international civil aviation.
The International Civil Aviation Organization pursues its aims and objectives through the issuance of the following: one, standards—these specifications necessary for the safety and regulation of international air navigation to which member states will comply; and, two, recommended practices—such specifications that are desirable for the interest of safety, regularity or efficiency of international civil aviation to which member states will endeavour to conform. In the last decade, Mr. President, ICAO has placed great emphasis on the ability of the civil aviation authorities of member states to comply with these standards and recommended practices, especially in safety. To this end, ICAO has sent audit teams to the various member states to assess their ability to comply with ICAO’s standards and recommended practices.
Trinidad and Tobago is among the states visited by ICAO. At around the same time, the American Federal Aviation Administration also saw it fit to launch its own programme of inspections. However, they put their own unique spin on the assessment process. They categorized states into three groupings based on their ability to adequately comply with ICAO standards. Trinidad and Tobago ultimately received favourable assessment by both the FAA and ICAO. In fact, Mr. President, Trinidad and Tobago is only one of the few countries that has attained Category 1 status according to the FAA, the most favourable grouping. However, both auditing bodies identified the areas within which there was room for improvement.
For our civil aviation system, Mr. President, to be counted as fully compliant with the highest levels of ICAO standards and recommended practices, the following had to be established, among other things. The upgrading of our civil aviation laws and regulations and the establishment of an autonomous civil