Secretary Buttigieg: Suggestions for Implementing President Biden’s International Aviation Safety Agenda

Secretary Buttigieg
Share this article: FacebooktwitterlinkedinFacebooktwitterlinkedin

New Administration, New Secretary, New Agenda

International Aviation Safety for DOT?

Based on President Biden’s Foreign Policy

President-elect Biden has nominated former South Bend Mayor  Pete Buttigieg as Secretary of Transportation. If[1] his nomination is confirmed, the  initiative likely to be top of his agenda will be infrastructure improvement. In pursuit of practical programs, the Secretary nominee  contacted Todd Hauptli CEO of AAAE to hear the airport executives’ views[2] on this complex subject. Kudos for good homework research, Mr. Secretary to be.

A subject perhaps not as familiar to the Rhodes Scholar and former Navy Intelligence officer, international aviation relations should be high on priorities as Secretary. Here are a few primers on the problem—a deterioration which began years ago and has had the tacit, if not conscious consent of Congress:


·      Five Well-Established Points Support Positive US International Aviation Assistance

·      FAA’s Past International Profile And A Look How To Reinvigorate Its Reputation

·      One MAX 8 Immediate Actionable Aviation Safety Lesson For International Aviation Safety

·      FAA’s International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) Program Change

·      African Aviation Safety Deficiencies Create TDA Program To Bring CAAs To International Standards

·      Adding Mr. Amin To FAA International Team A BIG PLUS

·    Caribbean AT map  A Better Approach To Aiding Our Caribbean Neighbors’ Aviation System?

·      The Caribbean Aviation Safety Needs The FAA’s And USTDA’s Help, Now

·      EU Targets South Asia & FAA Focuses On Caribbean

·      Is FAA’s Caribbean Focus The Best Choice?

·      Teaching Pilots “TASKS” Is Not Enough; FlightSafety International’s FlightSmart Can Do More For Pilots[1]

·      Reflections On The Global System Aviation Safety Audits

·      The US Leaves An Aviation Safety Void In Africa And Flight Safety Foundation & AviAssist Foundation EnterAfrica Aviation Safety Poster

·      Should Pilot Training Be Flagged As A Major Aviation Safety Priority?





These are just a few examples of how degrading the FAA’s international mission has had adverse consequences on the agency’s global effectiveness in promulgating safety standards. Gaps in foreign Civil Aviation Authorities competence are demonstrated by recent questions about their issuance of Airline Transport Pilot licences.

The US’s less than robust relations with the CAAs may have consequences in universal environmental standards which are being refined and implemented, too.

The nominated Secretary can rely on the words of the Biden international policy statement:


Buttigieg and Biden

Elevate Diplomacy: As president, Biden will elevate diplomacy as the premier tool of our global engagement. He will rebuild a modern, agile U.S. Department of State—investing in and re-empowering the finest diplomatic corps in the world and leveraging the full talent and richness of America’s diversity. Working cooperatively with other nations makes us more secure and more successful. For example, as president, Biden will launch a top-to-bottom review of our funding to Central America to determine how we can build on a successful initiative from the Obama-Biden administration that secured concrete commitments from the leaders of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras to take on the corruption, violence, and endemic poverty that drive migration. 

Restore and Reimagine Partnerships: A Biden administration will do more than restore our historic partnerships;cooperation with democratic partners beyond North America and Europe by reaching out to our partners in Asia to fortify our collective capabilities and integrating our friends in Latin America and Africa. When the United States hosts the next Summit of the Americas in 2021, President Biden will harness this opportunity to rebuild strong hemispheric ties based on respect for democracy, human rights, and the rule of law. We will also strengthen our alliances with Japan, South Korea, Australia and other Asian democracies, while sustaining an ironclad commitment to Israel’s security.

There are recent specific examples of how the FAA’s lowered international presence has allowed other CAAs to enhance their influence. Here are instances in which Bangladesh and Singapore are allying with EASA:


Newly launched aviation and aerospace univ in Bangladesh to be world-class: VC

Bangladesh CAA leader

Air Vice-Marshal AHM Fazlul Haque

Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Aviation and Aerospace University vice-chancellor Air Vice-Marshal AHM Fazlul Haque has said that they are working to build a world-class residential university for Bangladeshi and foreign students to cater to needs of the global aviation industry.

For this purpose, the university would introduce world-class academic facilities and courses in the upcoming decade.


And the institution, he went on, is now steadily moving forward to launch the courses for other departments with international-standard syllabuses

Related Coverage:

To this end, he said, they are closely working with Airbus.

Various countries and multinational companies are also willing to collaborate with the university in providing a world-class academic and industrial environment to future Bangladeshi civil aviators and avionics engineers, added the vice-chancellor.

A German company wants to set up flying simulators for the university as they see a huge prospect of its programmes, he added.

Fazlul said that British company Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group had also shown their interest to collaborate with the university located in northern Lalmonirhat, which would eventually be transformed, as he said, into a green aviation city.

On December 8, Airbus signed a letter of agreement with the university to support the development for it of an EASA-standard approved training organisation and a maintenance training organisation under the Airbus-approved training organisation umbrella….

EASA and CAAS Deepen Cooperation to Make Aircraft Type Certification Process More Efficient for Industry


COLOGNE/SINGAPORE, December 4, 2020 – The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and Civil Aviation Authority Singapore (CAAS) have updated their bilateral Working Arrangement to facilitate CAAS’ validation of EASA aircraft type certifications.

The amendment to the Working Arrangement on Airworthiness Certification will allow the two regulators to collaborate on facilitating aviation innovations, such as electric-vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. With immediate effect, CAAS will be able to validate EASA design approvals concurrently  and in close coordination* with EASA’s type certification process. It will help aviation companies in Singapore to innovate and benefit from rapidly developing aviation technologies.

“This amendment is testament to the excellent relations in aviation between Europe and Singapore. It further extends the trust we have in each other’s aviation system and our strong working relationship with CAAS,” said EASA Executive Director, Patrick Ky. “In today’s world, where product innovation is much faster than was the case only a decade ago, such parallel processes can help industry to launch their products more quickly and easily in important markets outside Europe.” 

Mr Kevin Shum, Director-General of CAAS, added “CAAS is committed to working together with the aviation community to promote safety and innovation, to advance aviation. This enhancement of the Working Arrangement is testament to the strong partnership between CAAS and EASA. It will help to develop Singapore as a centre of excellence for the aviation sector.”

*In the Working Arrangement on Airworthiness Certification between EASA and CAAS signed on 13 July 2017, the validation by CAAS could only commence after EASA had issued the Type Certificate.  

[1] For many years, the DoT position would have been confirmed by the Senate. In today’s extremely partisan atmosphere, that likelihood is greatly diminished; so, “if” rather than “when” is appropriate

[2] “Got a nice call today from Pete Buttigieg, incoming DOT Secretary. Mayors understand that airports are economic engines in their communities and this former mayor has serious policy chops he brings to the table.”

global aviation


Share this article: FacebooktwitterlinkedinFacebooktwitterlinkedin

Be the first to comment on "Secretary Buttigieg: Suggestions for Implementing President Biden’s International Aviation Safety Agenda"

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.