Mercredi 21 Août 2019  

N°102 - Deuxième trimestre 2013

La lettre diplometque
Émirats arabes unis
Vietnam - Diploprofil©
Organisations Internationales
Organisations Internationales
Questions de Protocole
La lettre diplometque
La lettre diplomatique Haut

The European Civil Aviation Conference: The Voice of Pan-European Civil Aviation

By Mr. Salvatore Sciacchitano,
Executive Secretary of the European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC)

Since its creation in 1955, at the joint instigation of the Council of Europe and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), ECAC has had a decisive and continuing influence on the evolution of civil aviation policy, within Europe and also at the global level.
With its membership of 44 States from across the continent*, ECAC provides a unique forum for the development and co-ordination of pan–European responses to the opportunities and challenges that present themselves to civil aviation today.  It is especially active in its strategic priority areas of safety (including accident and incident investigation), security and the environment, but also undertakes much valuable work on facilitation, training and economic issues.  In all of this, ECAC is able to help ensure that European civil aviation remains safe, secure, competitive and sustainable, and well positioned at the leading edge of this critically important global industry.
Based in Paris, ECAC shares offices with the ICAO Regional Office for Europe and the North Atlantic. Established to promote the continued development of a safe, secure, efficient and sustainable European air transport system, ECAC seeks to harmonise civil aviation policies and practices amongst its Member States, and to promote understanding on policy matters between its Member States and other regions of the world.
ECAC’s three-year forward work programme and supporting budget are set at a Triennial Session. This is held in Strasbourg, reflecting the Council of Europe’s role as one of ECAC’s original parents. The Triennial Session also appoints the ECAC President, currently Mr Catalin Radu (Director General of Civil Aviation for Romania), up to three Vice-Presidents, and the members of its Co-ordinating Committee which oversees ECAC’s activities between the Triennial Sessions. The Committee, eleven strong, chooses from amongst its number the Directors General who will serve as ECAC ‘Focal Points’ for different policy fields of the organisation’s work. Work goes forward, under the Focal Points’ direction, in a number of working groups and task forces.  These are serviced by a small Secretariat in whose hands there rests the day-to-day running of ECAC.  Led by the organisation’s Executive Secretary, the Secretariat comprises a multi-national team of experts with wide experience in all aspects of civil aviation.   
ECAC is today a forum for European discussion of every major civil aviation topic, able to draw on its long-established expertise and working in close partnership as appropriate with other major aviation players in Europe, notably the European Commission, the European Aviation Safety Agency and
EUROCONTROL.  ECAC also liaises closely with aviation industry stakeholders and consumer interests, while on issues being led elsewhere ECAC’s wide geographical reach means it is perfectly positioned to bring a pan-European, integrated perspective to the debate.
On a range of civil aviation issues, ECAC pursues arrangements and understandings with its fellow regional organisations around the world, and bilaterally with States outside Europe.  In this connection it has agreed a number of Memoranda of Understanding, under which it shares its experience, learns in turn from those of others, and carries European experience and initiatives to other parts of the global aviation community.
As well as conducting its business through a variety of working groups, task forces etc, ECAC organises workshops, seminars, and training courses, including with its international partners outside Europe. It has also a well-established reputation for the excellence of the international conferences (e.g. “ECAC/EU Dialogue with the European air transport industry”) and seminars which it organises at regular intervals on a range of issues of interest to European aviation authorities and industry stakeholders.  It also brings Europe’s Directors General together each year for a day’s facilitated debate in the “ECAC Forum”, on an issue of strategic importance for European and global civil aviation.
The selection of issues for inclusion in the organisation’s very substantial work programme takes into account the importance and interest of the subject to a large number of Member States, or to other European organisations, and the possibility of an acceptable solution to the problems involved.  Cooperation in particular with the European Commission and ICAO, and the possibility of making an effective contribution to their work are also considered.
ECAC has important relationships with the JAA Training Organisation, an Associated Body of ECAC which provides a wide range of safety and environmental training courses in Europe and beyond, and with the European Aviation Security Training Institute, a joint venture between ICAO, ECAC, the European Commission and several industry stakeholders.

ECAC’s Missions:
Ensuring the highest standards of safety
Safety is a strategic priority for ECAC, which is a key contributor to global regulatory and other activity in the field, most notably at ICAO but also in its relations with sister organisations and bilateral partners.  In addition to co-ordinating and helping define the safety policy positions for which Europe argues internationally, ECAC pursues benchmarking and other safety enhancement initiatives within Europe, where it also seeks to serve as a “bridge” between those of its Member States which are not also part of the European Union, and the programmes and activities at the EU level led by the European Commission and the European Aviation Safety Agency.

Protecting the environment
Facilitating the growth of air transport whilst having full regard for its environmental impact is a continuing priority for ECAC, which strongly supports Europe’s leading role in the field while also pursuing global solutions under the auspices of ICAO. Working across the full domain of aircraft noise, local air quality and climate change emissions, ECAC has been engaged with aviation environmental issues for many years now, providing advice and recommendations to its Directors General and co-ordinating the development of European positions.  Its expert group on the “Abatement of Nuisances Caused by Air Transport” was established as long ago as 1974, and today brings together representatives drawn from ECAC’s forty-four States, aircraft manufacturers and operators, airports and NGOs.

Mitigating today’s and tomorrow’s threats to aviation
Security is one of the three strategic priorities for ECAC. Recognising the importance of harmonising measures at a pan-European level, all ECAC Member States are committed to implementing the security measures defined in the organisation’s regional security reference document, entitled Doc 30.  These measures address existing threats to civil aviation, but also new and emerging ones such as cyber threats.  Support for their implementation is provided to Member States by the ECAC Audit and Capacity Building Programme, which offers help across a wide range of activities from the establishment of national security programmes to the conduct of vulnerability assessments at Member States’ airports. Priority is also given to providing Member States with reliable information on the detection capability of security equipment, by means of the ECAC Common Evaluation Process, which conducts laboratory tests of equipment performance against agreed performance standards.

Facilitating passenger travel and cargo movements
ECAC Member States pursue on a continuing basis improvements to the passenger experience by developing processes facilitating their travel. The increasing number of countries using Automated Border Controls reflects the success of one such initiative. ECAC’s priority remains to promote the understanding of issues such as Passenger Name Record and Advance Passenger Information, to develop best practices for the implementation of measures for the assistance to passengers with reduced mobility, and to review developments in the field of cargo, in particular customs requirements and their synergies with those of security.

Implementing an ECAC Training Policy
ECAC’s Training Policy, established in 2010, gave a new emphasis to the organisation’s role in ensuring that training is given its proper priority in the continued drive for safe, secure and green air transport in Europe. The training policy promotes education and training as keys to the delivery of satisfactory safety and security standards, while also recognising the need to anticipate future training needs, to promote the mutual recognition of competencies, and to support the mobility of people working in aviation within Europe.
 The Brussels-based European Aviation Security Training Institute provides training courses in aviation security, while the JAA Training Organisation, an Associated Body of ECAC headquartered in Hoofddorp in the Netherlands, has long offered training courses on European aviation safety rules and regulations, and more recently in the aviation environmental field too.

Economics of air transport
ECAC has throughout its history played a key role in developing and promulgating policies adapted to the requirements of the European air transport industry.  It does so in all economic fields and usually in close cooperation with the European Commission.  The regular ECAC/EU Dialogues have proved very successful and useful in promoting close ties with the air transport industry and debating issues of common interest.
Fuller information about ECAC’s background and mission, its Member States, its publications, conferences and workshops, its calendar of events, and much more, can be found on the ECAC Web site (    

Retour en haut de page

La lettre diplomatique Bas
  Présentation - Derniers Numéros - Archives - Nos Liens - Contacts - Mentions Légales