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The International Civil Aviation Organization

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The International Civil Aviation Organization

Origin, Objectives and Achievements


Civil aviation is a powerful force for progress in our modern global society. It creates and supports millions of jobs worldwide. It forms part of the economic lifeline of many countries. It is a catalyst for travel and tourism, the world's largest industry. Beyond economics, air transport enriches the social and cultural fabric of society and contributes to the attainment of peace and prosperity throughout the world. Therefore, providing a cohesive, global form of organization for such activities is essential in ensuring their quality, stability and effectiveness.

The International Civil Aviation Organization:

I- Definition:

The International Civil Aviation Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations, whose mandate is to ensure the efficient, safe and orderly evolution of international civil aviation.

II- Origin:

The International Civil Aviation Organization was first established in Chicago, U.S in December 1941, in the Convention on International Civil Aviation, which also formed its charter. The convention, also known as the Chicago convention, established rules of airspace, airplane registration and safety, and details the rights of the signatories in relation to air travel.

The charter document was signed on December 7, 1944 in Chicago, Illinois by 52 signatory states. It received the requisite 26th ratification on March 5, 1947 and went into effect on April 4, 1947. The convention has since been revised seven times (in 1959, 1963, 1969, 1975, 1980, 1997, and 2000).

The convention states that the organization is made up of an Assembly, a Council and a Secretariat. The chief officers are the President of the Council and the Secretary General.

 The Assembly, composed of representatives from all Contracting States, is the sovereign body of ICAO. It meets every three years

* Reviews in detail the work of the Organization.

* Sets policy for the coming years and establishes a triennial budget.

* Elects the Council, the governing body for a three-year term.

 The Council is composed of members from 33 States who maintain their offices and conduct their business at the ICAO Headquarters.

* Adopts Standards and Recommended Practices and incorporates them as Annexes to the Convention on International Civil Aviation.

* Gives continuing direction to the work of ICAO.

* Develops Standards, with the assistance of:

The Air Navigation Commission in technical matters.

The Air Transport Committee in economic matters.

The Committee on Unlawful Interference in aviation security matters.

A Standard: Is any specification for physical characteristics, configuration, material, performance, personnel or procedure, which is recognized as necessary for the safety or regularity of international air navigation .

 The Secretariat, headed by a Secretary General, is divided into five main divisions:

* The Air Navigation Bureau

* The Air Transport Bureau

* The Technical Co-operation Bureau

* The Legal Bureau

* The Bureau of Administration and Services

ICAO works in close co-operation with other members of the United Nations family such as the World Meteorological Organization, the International Telecommunication Union, the Universal Postal Union, the World Health Organization and the International Maritime Organization, in addition to non-governmental organizations.

Location: ICAO has its headquarters in Montreal, Canada, with seven regional offices throughout the world. From its beginning in 1944 it has grown to an organization with over 180 Contracting States

III - Objectives of ICAO:

1. To secure international co-operation and a highest possible degree of uniformity in regulations and standards, procedures and organization regarding civil aviation



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