Five Well-Established Points support Positive US international aviation assistance

international aviation assistance
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5 Ways the US Supports International Aviation

A President has been attributed as saying:

“If not us, who? If not now, when?” 

This epigram seems to be applicable to the US aviation’s global presence. The following five points makes the answer an axiomatic, “Yes, let’s do it now.”

  1. ICAO’s Secretary General Secretary General Dr. Fang Liu declared that Africa would benefit from support for achieving safe and secure air transport, its regional economy and its sustainability.

Her message to her Member States was that sufficient investment in the continent’s civil aviation capacities, including infrastructure and skilled human resources will help these countries attain their aviation potential. The ICAO Secretary added

“I am a firm believer in partnerships, and Africa is one of aviation’s greatest examples today of what cooperation and commitment can deliver in terms of concrete civil aviation progress…ICAO has been working very hard to foster this type of cooperation in every world region…”

[emphasis added]

From her global perspective at ICAO, her identification of Africa’s needs and potential should be noted by countries which have those resources.

  1. S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx led a delegation of 14 U.S. companies on a multi-sector trade mission to sub-Saharan Africa.

He targeted Mozambique, South Africa, and Kenya. He introduced U.S. firms in the transportation, energy equipment and services, and the agricultural equipment sectors to the sub-Saharan Africa region while also promoting the importance of exports of these companies’ world-class products and services. The Secretary explained his goals:

U.S. companies are continually evaluating new markets in order to grow their business. The mission participants offer the products, services, and technological expertise needed to help these three markets achieve their goals in a variety of critical industry sectors…This trade mission represents our commitment to connecting U.S. companies to opportunities on the continent, and will lead to business growth for both U.S. companies and their local partners.”

[emphasis added]

The Secretary has established that there are assets in America interested in the partnerships which ICAO Secretary Liu and by his mission they know the continent.

  1. The EC/EU/EASA (the EC is the author, but the other two pan-European organizations will be involved in implementation) unveiled a major promotional aviation initiative called an “Aviation Strategy for Europe” on December 7. This marketing campaign’s goal is “to bolster the continent’s €110 billion aviation sector” by negotiating new international relationships with other countries. The target of this sales effort is new “air transport agreements, revising safety regulations and investing in new technology.”

Olivier Jankovec, director General of ACI Europe, commented that this package is a set of actions aimed at opening up access to key external markets and addressing capacity problems in the air and at airports, all while maintaining the highest levels of safety and security. He said that “the Commission has gotten it right – taking stock of the increasing strategic relevance of air connectivity for our economy.”

EASA appears ready to address the needs of Africa, it would appear.

  1. Administrator Huerta has established a international aviation assistancetheme of “global leadership” as one of the agency’s four strategic initiatives at the Dubai Air Show.

The Global Leadership Initiative is setting the FAA priority to engage with the international aviation community “to improve safety, efficiency, and environmental sustainability through regulatory harmonization and partnerships.” Compared to the EC Declaration, that’s a passive, non-promotional statement. He has a staff with international presence and relations; however, he has had to shrink the overseas offices staffed with FAA aviation experts.

In response to the EC declaration of expansion, should not Congress reauthorize to “promote” aviation? The US is the birthplace of this industry; the FAA should be allowed to proudly promote its approach to safety standards.

The FAA Office of Policy, International Affairs, and Environment’s mission is to increase the safety and capacity of the global aerospace system in an environmentally sound manner. An APL priority is its Aviation Cooperation Program. The goal of ACP is to facilitate public-private partnerships designed to consolidate U.S. technical cooperation. These agreements promote aviation safety and efficiency in a collaborative manner with aviation interests in foreign countries.

The overall ACP strategy fosters cooperation between the U.S. government and corporate aviation members in the delivery of technical programs and assistance, thereby avoiding duplication and maximizing financial benefits for both sides. The principal goals of the ACP are to:

  • facilitate and coordinate U.S. government and aviation industry training and technical cooperation to avoid duplication and promote synergy;
  • increase awareness of U.S. technology, product standards, procedures and services that will assist countries in developing its aviation infrastructure;
  • promote safer operations and more efficient management in the aviation sector;


  • foster a long-term working relationships between the U.S. aviation community and counterparts in foreign countries.

Sounds like the FAA has the organizational capabilities and capacities to fulfill Secretary Foxx’s mission and Administrator Huerta’s Initiative.

  1. international aviation assistanceThe US Trade and Development Agency, among many other tasks, works with US partners in developing and middle-income countries around the world to advance important development objectives. The success of the USTDA program is due in large part to the dedication of the overseas project sponsors in host countries with whom the agency works to making effective use of USTDA assistance.

The agency awards grant funds to overseas project sponsors for a variety of activities, including technical assistance, training programs, or early investment analysis/feasibility studies. Our program responds to priorities that overseas project sponsors establish for themselves. If necessary, USTDA can provide assistance to help project sponsors to define their priorities.

USTDA’s targeted brand of foreign assistance provides overseas project sponsors with access to U.S. private sector expertise in the pursuit of key development objectives. Grant recipients are required to select U.S. firms to perform USTDA-funded activities; however, there is no further obligation to procure U.S. goods or services once a USTDA activity is complete.

Overseas project sponsors are strongly encouraged to contact the appropriate USTDA regional team to discuss specific project concepts for potential USTDA grant funding. Inquiries and project descriptions should be sent via e-mail to the USTDA regional staff that is responsible for managing Agency-funded activities in the foreign country where the project is located.

USTDA should lead in the creation of partnerships for projects to help the Civil Aviation Authorities of Africa and   to help develop the infrastructure needed for that continent’s aviation industry. 

→ It’s not just Africa that needs help—Barbados’. Opposition MP   for St. Michael North Ronald Toppin made the following statement, which is basically a request for help of this nation which depends on aviation and tourism for its economy:

“In seven or eight critical areas in July 2010, Barbados has failed and even if today, as a result of regulations laid last week, we say we satisfy the second requirement in terms of regulations, we are still falling short in respect of six and therefore are not any better today, some six years after an FAA audit was done. That is unsatisfactory,” he argued.

Admitting that it was not easy for any country to attain category one status, Toppin nevertheless pointed out that it has been achieved by Jamaica, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago.”

[emphasis added]

?  The hanging, unanswered question is that,

  • in light of all of the above well-established predicates
  • in support of the US’s support of foreign CAAs,international aviation assistance
  • why DoT, FAA and USTDA have not already initiated programs
  • to meet these aviation needs?


ARTICLE: ICAO Secretary General: partnership and investment crucial to sustainable aviation development in Africa

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