Today is International Civil Aviation Day. This day celebrates the formation of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) on 7 December 1944. ICAO was formed to recommend establishing international standards and practices for civil aviation in areas such as safety, security, operations, and environmental protection.
In 2019, the 75th anniversary of the formation of ICAO, it chose a five-year theme of “Advancing Innovation for Global Aviation Development”, and as such, we celebrate this theme today. It is especially pertinent that at this time, whilst the world continues to deal with a pandemic, that we remember that aviation has supported the fight against COVID-19, particularly so on St Helena, with flights bringing vaccines and essential medical items to support our COVID-19 preventative and protective measures.
Aviation has also benefited our economic and social well-being, allowing for quicker access to the Island for returning residents, family and friends, tourists and business people. It has also supported a vital link to advanced medical treatment abroad through the provision of air ambulance flights.
As the airport operator and aerodrome certificate holder, SHAL continues to work with the aviation regulator Air Safety Support International (ASSI) to implement and maintain those ICAO standards and recommended practices for the benefit of all.
Gwyneth Howell, CEO and Accountable Manager for St Helena Airport Limited comments: “Aviation is a passion, demanding knowledge, experience and dedication, to achieve the impossible in these trying times. Wishing a very happy International Civil Aviation Day to all.”
So today we celebrate the international aviation industry, an industry that continues to strive for a better, more environmentally sustainable transport sector that quickly, efficiently, safely, and securely moves people and goods all over the world in support of its economies and societies.