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US Backs Caribbean Aviation Safety

by Mike Godfrey, Tax-News.com, Washington

19 March 2010


The United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has backed the Caribbean Aviation Safety and Security Oversight System (CASSOS) with a grant of USD207,000. The System is currently being ratified by Caribbean nations for implementation in the near future.

"The USTDA grant will provide a tailored and individualized approach to help international airport operators in selected CASSOS member states meet International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) airport certification requirements," USTDA Regional Director Nathan Younge explained. "These plans cover procedures for the operation and inspection of airport facilities, in order to ensure compliance with international standards."

CASSOS grew out of the Regional Aviation Safety Oversight System (RASOS) that was established in 2002 as a result of a 2001 agreement by the Association of Civil Aviation Authorities of the Caribbean (ACAAC) to develop a mechanism that would reduce the cost of providing the required airworthiness and flight operation oversight services to individual CARICOM member states.

The CASSOS is aimed at strengthening the civil aviation authorities of the region by promoting the upgrading and harmonization of regulations, standards, and inspector training. It also serves to enhance the ability of individual states to fully discharge their safety oversight responsibilities and provide resource-sharing mechanisms to ensure that scarce technical skills are always available.

The establishment of a comprehensive ICAO standard certification program in the Caribbean is expected to support the implementation of airport upgrades that will improve infrastructure, increase the level of air service to certified airports, and bolster trade between the United States and CASSOS member countries.

Headquartered in Kingston, Jamaica, CASSOS is a regional aviation organization that encompasses CARICOM. The CASSOS member states participating in this USTDA-sponsored project are Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Saint Lucia, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Suriname.

TAGS: Haiti | Suriname | Saint Lucia | Saint Vincent and the Grenadines | aviation | Grenada | Jamaica | Dominica | Guyana | United States

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