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ICAO Council Underscores Vital Role of Air Transport to Worldwide Post-Crisis Economic Recovery26/03/2020

On March 23, the ICAO Council urged at its Montreal headquarters States, international organizations and financial institutions to consider the critical importance of civil aviation to the recovery of the worldwide economy after COVID-19 pandemic.

After the World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19 a global pandemic on March 12, UN Secretary General, António Guterres pointed out during a video press conference held at UN Headquarters that “We are facing a global health crisis unlike any in the 75-year history of the United Nations. After tackling the health emergency, we must focus on the social impact and the economic response and recovery, and creativity of the response must match the unique nature of the crisis.” ICAO Council President Salvatore Sciacchitano, in echoing the guiding principles of António Guterres’ remarks, stressed that only by implementing, on an urgent basis, efficient public policies and strategies in the aviation sector will a recovery of the worldwide economy after the pandemic be more easily achieved.

Salvatore Sciacchitano pointed out that international air transport plays a significant role in addressing the current crisis through vital air cargo services supporting the global supply chains, rescue of stranded passengers, as well as timely emergency and humanitarian response capabilities; that maintaining the financial and functional operability of the global aviation system is a matter of urgency; and that worldwide air transport connectivity stimulates economies through employment, trade and tourism, and supports States in achieving the Agenda 2030 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The Council of ICAO is calling on States and financial institutions to examine the best means of supporting sectoral stakeholders, airlines, airports, air navigation service providers, manufacturers, without prejudice to fair competition and by ensuring transparency.