ICAO concludes successful ICAN2017 air services negotiation event
posted on Dec 19, 2017
Montréal and Colombo, 19 December 2017 – The Tenth ICAO Air Services Negotiation Event (ICAN2017) wound up on a high note in Colombo, Sri Lanka earlier this month, with 66 States and territories taking full advantage of the unique one-stop platform and cost-effective multi-negotiation framework to expand air transport liberalization and market access through over 420 new air services agreements and arrangements.
The opening remarks for the event were provided by Mr. Boubacar Djibo, the Director of ICAO’s Air Transport Bureau, on behalf of ICAO Council President Dr. Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu. Noting the $2.7 trillion which air transport generates for the global economy each year, as well as the 63.5 million people the sector provides sustainable employment to globally, Mr. Djibo highlighted that “more and more governments have come to recognize how fundamental air transport access is to a wide range of their socio-economic development objectives.”
He also enjoined civil aviation policy makers and regulators to “continue to expand market access opportunities so that the regulatory environment can effectively support a viable and sustainable future for air transport, as well as tourism and trade.”
Speaking during the opening ceremonies, the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation of Sri Lanka, the Honourable Nimal Siripala de Silva, emphasized his country’s status as a small island nation, and noted that it absolutely relied on aviation connectivity to grow its economy sustainably and ultimately attain its socio-economic development goals for Sri Lankans – including those respective of the UN’s worldwide 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
He stressed that Sri Lanka recognized the fundamental importance of ICAO compliance to enable those high value global connections, and underscored that its government has worked with great determination to achieve ICAO effective implementation averages of over 85 percent for both its aviation safety and aviation security oversight responsibilities.
More than 426 negotiators took part in some 456 meetings during the five-day ICAN event in Colombo this year. The agreements they concluded will now help to improve the global operating environment for airlines and service providers and create new opportunities for them to grow their businesses. They will also help to generate an expanded selection of air carriers and destinations for global air travellers, in addition to more competitive fares.
Since its inception in 2008, the ICAO ICAN negotiation model has become an important interactive platform for promoting understanding and cooperation amongst government policy makers, regulators, and industry.
The 11th ICAO Air Services Negotiation event in 2018 (ICAN2018) was announced to be held in Kenya at a soon to be confirmed location.