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Standardized runway reporting format to enhance aviation safety worldwide

The ICAO Global Reporting Format (GRF) for assessing and reporting runway surface conditions, which became applicable worldwide today, will help mitigate the risk of runway excursions, which continues to be the most common form of aviation accident.

The harmonization of the assessment and reporting of runway surface conditions will not only benefit runway safety, but also efficiency and sustainability, through a better planning of contaminant removal and the more effective use of de-icing and other treatments.  

"Early implementation by a number of pioneer States has confirmed the benefits and suitability of the GRF," declared ICAO Secretary General Juan Carlos Salazar, noting that the operational experience gained during the upcoming winter, rainy, and monsoon seasons in various parts of the globe will provide important opportunities to review and enhance implementation.

First-of-kind training agreement partners ICAO with Emirates

As the global air transport sector recovers from the effects of the pandemic, a novel agreement between ICAO Global Aviation Training (GAT) and Emirates will see both organizations work closely to develop and deliver training programmes, supporting aviation capacity-building and human resource development worldwide.

The agreement, the first of its kind with an airline, sees Emirates joining ICAO’s TRAINAIR PLUS programme as a Corporate Partner. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed on 4 October 2021 by ICAO Secretary General Juan Carlos Salazar and His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive Emirates Airline & Group. 

The first joint collaboration under this MoU will be the delivery of a Ground Handling Diploma programme. This programme will encompass operations and management, contemporary aviation issues, safeguarding the aviation industry, aviation logistics and passenger handling services, and will be under the administration of Emirates Group Security.

Testing and Cross-border Risk Management Measures Manual

To support the recovery of global aviation from the impacts of COVID-19, ICAO has released the second edition of the Testing and Cross-border Risk Management Measures Manual. With information about the public health corridors (PHCs), the latest scientific developments in testing, plus an additional section devoted to vaccination, this manual will guide you towards a successful recovery for air transportation. The manual is available in English, Arabic, Chinese, Russian and Spanish.

To get the latest on this and other ICAO documents and publications, be sure to visit our ICAO eLibrary. Subscription is free, and it comes with useful features* that allow you to cite, highlight, bookmark, share, and more. Create an account and start reading ICAO Publications.

ICAO is pleased to announce that the World Civil Aviation Report - Volume 5 will be launching in December 2021

ICAO is pleased to announce that the World Civil Aviation Report - Volume 5 will be launching in December 2021. 

The World Civil Aviation Report is ICAO's flagship publication which reviews the state of the aviation industry through the lens of diverse global aviation experts. 

The report is an analysis of how stakeholders are tackling today’s most pressing civil aviation challenges. 

This volume covers:

  • COVID-19 recovery and reflections;
  • 2020 industry performance in numbers;
  • Regulatory and technology developments;
  • Other topics relevant to ICAO's five strategic objectives.

Heliport Manual - 5th Edition

The Fifth Edition of the Heliport Manual (Doc 9261) provides guidance for the implementation of the Annex 14 — Aerodromes, Volume Il — Heliports. 

The manual consists of two parts: Part I addresses design and operations for heliports at a range of offshore installations and vessels; and Part Il provides guidance for heliport design and operations in the onshore environment. 

This new edition has taken into account the substantial development of Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) incorporated into Annex 14 in recent years, as well as the equipment, technology and best practices now used in the heliports arena.

The President of ICAO expresses gratitude to the former ICAO Secretary General

Below we are sharing the speech of the President of the ICAO Council during the closing of the 223rd Council Session. Mr. Salvatore Sciacchitano took the opportunity to thank Dr. Fang Liu, the 12th Secretary General of ICAO, for her leadership and dedicated service to the Organization and he highlighted some of her many achievements in this role.

As we come to the end of this 223rd Council session, I am honoured to extend the Council’s sincere appreciation to Dr. Fang Liu, who will soon complete her mandate as Secretary General. When Dr. Liu was first appointed to serve as ICAO’s 12th Secretary General, in 2015, it was on the basis of her commitment to transform ICAO into a more efficient and relevant United Nations Specialized Agency. 

Over the past six years, we have witnessed her efforts to strengthen ICAO’s management team and place a heightened focus on resources mobilization and a comprehensive risk management framework, to mention just some of her initiatives. 

Manual on Aircraft Maintenance Personnel Competency-based Training and Assessment

The manual provides guidance to States, approved maintenance
organizations (AMOs) and aviation training organizations (ATOs) on the new approach of applying competency-based training and assessment to aircraft maintenance personnel (AMP) in accordance with Part III of the PANS-TRG, Doc 9868. The procedures provide a flexible framework that stakeholders can adapt to their local operational contexts and requirements.

This manual helps States, AMOs and ATOs to understand competency-based training to:
1. Provide appropriate oversight of organizations involved in aircraft maintenance;
2. Develop new training systems or evolve their existing systems towards a competency-based approach;
3. Perform a new approach to AMP.

ICAO Global Aviation Security Symposium 2021 (AVSEC2021)

Since last year, civil aviation has been severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and has had to adapt to a broad array of challenges to keep employees and passengers safe, mitigate the spread of the virus, and respond to dramatic shifts in air travel demand. In parallel, appropriate levels of security need to be maintained, while facing the new challenges of a reduced workforce and financial constraints. As such, the theme of this year’s Symposium will be “AVSEC: Business NOT as usual”.

Please visit the Commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks page for more details on the sessions that will be presented on 10 September.


Delivering another important contribution to the international community’s efforts to realize a responsible and sustainable air transport recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, ICAO has announced the publishing of new technical specifications for a Visible Digital Seal (VDS) for non-constrained environments.

The ICAO VDS stores datasets for test and vaccination certificates in a two-dimensional barcode which can be paper- or screen-based. Border control and other receiving parties can verify the data against established requirements efficiently and seamlessly, including through the use of traveller self-service kiosks and processes.

The VDS barcode is digitally signed for security, with the signature being based on the same public key cryptographic infrastructure principles already used to support ePassport issuance and authentication by more than 145 countries globally.

There is NOTAM like the present to launch this global campaign

Every day thousands of NOTAM are filed with aviation authorities to alert pilots of potential hazards along their flight routes, or in locations that could impact their flight routes. Ironically, the huge amount of NOTAM that pilots have to review is part of the reason why they miss safety-critical information. On any given day, there are some 35,000 active NOTAM circulating in the global air transport system. In 2020, the total number of NOTAM issued exceeded 1.7 million. It is not uncommon for a pre-flight briefing package that supports a long-haul international flight to contain more than 100 densely printed pages of NOTAM information.

The number of NOTAM have increased steadily by, on average, more than 100,000 annually. Due to the COVID pandemic, however, the total number of NOTAM decreased by five percent in 2020, the first decrease in over 10 years (Source: Eurocontrol, International NOTAM statistics 2000-2020).

In other words…Analysis has shown that of these 35,000 NOTAM that are in the system every single day, on average 7,000 are older than three months. In other words, there are about twenty percent of NOTAM appearing in pre-flight information packages for pilots that are outdated and should not be there. If we can eliminate all old NOTAM, we can significantly improve the NOTAM system and thereby enhance flight safety.

Implementation Package (iPack)

In light of the unprecedented impact COVID-19 is inflicting on the air transport industry, ICAO’s coordinated response in supporting Member States in their implementation efforts regarding recovery and preparedness for a Public Health Event of International Concern (PHEIC) is critical.

The support ICAO is providing to Member States addresses the various needs to cope with the challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in regard to the movement of goods and health of passengers. This includes aspects related to public health-related measures, facilitation and aviation security, aviation safety (e.g. management of temporary regulatory alleviations), risk management, and air transport and economics. The support will be provided through Implementation Packages (iPack).

Addenda to the ICAO Technical Instructions are now available

ICAO approved addenda to the 2021-2022 Edition of the Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air (Technical Instructions, Doc 9284) to address issues related to the containment of COVID-19 and to facilitate the transport of COVID-19 vaccines. 

Addendum 1

Facilitates the transport of COVID-19 vaccines and the ability of airline operators to carry alcohol-based cleaning products and hand sanitizers for use by flight crew, cabin crew and passengers. 

Addendum 2

Expands the scope of the amendment contained in Addendum No. 1 


The 2021 ICAO Stocktaking, to be held on 31 August - 3 September 2021, is one of the most important global event of the year on the decarbonisation of the aviation sector. The first three days will provide a forum for the exchange and collection of information and data between all aviation stakeholders, covering the three areas for in-sector reductions: technologies, operations, and Sustainable Aviation Fuels. The final day of the event will be devoted to polices on Green Aviation Recovery.

During the event aeronautical pioneers, industry leaders, technical experts, researchers, innovators, civil society advocates, and States, will illustrate their concrete and ambitious plans for decarbonizing international aviation. The event will conclude with a policy day, featuring high-level interventions to discuss the link between the post-pandemic green recovery and the future of sustainable aviation.

Read ICAO’s regulatory publications online

Since January the ICAO eLibrary digital publications repository has been available online. The new platform provides more public access to ICAO’s regulatory documents - check out the eLibrary introduction video on ICAO TV below. 

A selection of ICAO Annexes and Manuals are now available on the eLibrary platform. More ICAO Annexes, manuals and other documents will be released throughout 2021, register to receive alerts!

Explore the latest ICAO publications on the eLibrary now!

Introducing ICAO & Training Weeks

ICAO's Training Weeks bring together aviation professionals, industry specialists, ICAO experts, and other air transport stakeholders under one theme to discuss latest trends, share challenges, and exchange on industry best practices. Participants of each ICAO Training Week also take part in an ICAO training course relevant to the theme of the Week. 

Each ICAO Training Week includes:

  • A virtual opening ceremony
  • A technical panel of experts addressing the theme of the week
  • Simultaneous delivery of training courses in various ICAO languages and scheduled in different time zones
  • A virtual certificate delivery ceremony

ICAO Safety report 2020 Edition

Improving the safety of the global air transport system is ICAO’s guiding and most fundamental strategic objective. 

The Organization works constantly to address and enhance global aviation safety through the following coordinated activities:

• Policy and standardization;
• Monitoring of key safety trends and indicators;
• Safety analysis; and
• Implementing programmes to address safety issues.

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