ICAO Council concludes 222nd Session; Makes Important Progress in International Aviation

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The ICAO Council concluded the meetings of its 222nd Session, formalizing important progress on air transport developments relating to ongoing global pandemic response, emissions offsetting, gender equality, and remotely-piloted aircraft systems (RPAS), among others.

The Council’s contributions to the continuing work to help countries respond and recover from the pandemic on an aligned, effective basis globally, came with its adoption of the latest ‘Phase III’ guidance of its Aviation Recovery Task Force (CART), and the decision to convene a ministerial conference on COVID-19 this coming October.

Where sustainability and the environment are concerned, the Council agreed on additional CORSIA eligible emissions units programs for use in CORSIA and on additional new criteria for the assessment of the sustainability of aviation fuels to be eligible for use in the next phase of CORSIA. The Council also launched the first periodic CORSIA Review that will recommend possible improvements and adjustments to the implementation of the CORSIA scheme for consideration at the 41st ICAO Assembly scheduled for 2022.

Other important progress was made on new amendments to the annexes to the Chicago Convention supporting the integration of remotely-piloted aircraft systems into the international air transport regulatory framework, the approval of a new structure for ICAO Cybersecurity activities, the adoption of a new Declaration on gender equality in ICAO’s technical and governing bodies, and in the inaugural meeting of the Council’s new industry consultative body.

The 222nd Session also witnessed the Council’s election and appointment of Mr. Juan Carlos Salazar as ICAO’s new Secretary-General beginning in August this year, at which time he will replace Dr. Fang Liu of China.

It also saw the formal suspension of the diplomatic proceedings regarding the dispute between Qatar and Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt, and Bahrain, at the request of the State parties concerned and as a consequence of the Al Ula Declaration.

Additional progress was made on ICAO governance and ethical conduct, including procedures for handling complaints, adoption of the ICAO Enterprise Risk Management Framework, and the restructuring of the Council’s own committees and groups.

The ICAO Council is responsible for standards adoption and other ICAO governance responsibilities while the agency’s full Assembly of 193 national governments is not in session. It is comprised of diplomatic representatives and ambassadors from 36 countries which are elected by each ICAO Assembly for a three-year term.

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