Flying with fresh wings

George Hutson at the controls.

The Ministry of International Business and International Transport is actively pursuing the establishment of a Civil Aviation Authority.

Minister with responsibility for that area, George Hutson, said today that work was continuing with the International Civil Aviation Organisation to achieve a suitable entity that would ensure the sector continued to expand in the context of a stringent international regulatory framework.

He was speaking during a flag-raising ceremony and official opening of a Careers Day at the GAIA to mark International Civil Aviation Day celebrated today under the theme Aviation: Our Reliable Connection to the World.

“As a significant international aviation centre, Barbados is continually working to ensure that all of our international obligations with respect to aviation safety oversight are met and conform to international best practice,” he said.

Hutson added that routinely both the ICAO and the Federal Aviation Administration in the US performed audits of Barbados’ regulatory framework and the systems and procedures established at the GAIA to ensure safety oversight.

“All respective responsibilities are to create and sustain that delicate balance that ensures hassle free and safe travel in today’s global environment,” he noted.

Hutson said Government was “extremely mindful” of the proud record of safe and secure air travel in the region over the past 50 or so years, particularly considering its importance to the economic stability of Barbados and the countries in the Caribbean.

“Aviation safety and security are paramount for us. Safety and security issues require constant attention and continuous improvement. Over the years we have seen new technologies, new procedures and new governance models which have contributed to making the skies safer and more secure,” he said.

The minister pointed out that a lot of emphasis was placed on the training and certification of staff.

“The Barbados Civil Aviation Training Centre is the only ICAO air training institution in the English speaking Caribbean. All certification issued by the Barbados Civil Aviation Training Centre is acceptable by aviation universities where credits are offered,” he outlined.

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