The Nordic States have a strong history of international engagement for less developed parts of the world. Also within the aviation sector the Nordics have provided highly motivated experts to projects to ensure safe aviation in a crisis or in assisting old and new aviation facilities getting the highest possible safety standards. This assistance is in most cases given at no cost or obligation for the receivers. Here are a few projects the Nordic States have been involved in for the past decade.
Management and regulation of the Pristina aerodrome (2004-2008)
The certification of Pristina Airport in Kosovo was a major project involving the participation of several entities. In March 2004, the Icelandic CAA (ICAA) made an initial audit of the facility. Subsequently, a declaration of fitness for the airport was issued. An interim aerodrome certificate was later issued after corrections based on the audit were completed. Under responsibility of the ICAA, the audit team’s members were airport experts and auditors from Iceland, Finland and Denmark.
The whole programme lasted almost five years, during which inspections and audits occurred regularly. From the first declaration of fitness, Pristina was in operation as an international airport, with several European airlines using it as a part of their route network. In 2006, Pristina International Airport was chosen by Airports Council International as the best European airport serving fewer than a million passengers
The Philippines flooding disaster (2009)
During the disastrous floods in the Philippines in 2009 the Norwegian CAA was asked by the United Nations to provide aviation expertise to ensure safe helicopter operations during the crisis.
Mr. Thomas Hytten (picture), who works as Inspector of Flight Operations at the Norwegian CAA, was seconded at no cost for the UN or the Philippines to ensure that the operations were carried out in the safest possible way. This enabled affected people throughout the country to receive emergency aid earlier than they would have done without an airborne operation.
Mr. Hytten stayed at the Philippines for almost two months assisting the UN operations.
Harmonizing regulations and working practices in Ukraine (2011-2013)
Since October 2011 Sweden, with Spain as junior partner, is managing a European Union funded twinning project in Ukraine with the State Aviation Administration of Ukraine as beneficiary. The objective is harmonizing regulations and working practices with international standards and working practices within the areas of Airports, Air Navigation Services and Economic Oversight. The project has a budget of nearly 1.7 million Euros and lasts for 21 months.
The idea behind the concept of Twinning is for “sister authorities” in two countries - in this case one EU Member State and one non-member - to reach the goals of the project by continuous interaction and cooperation throughout the project. As a concrete result of the project the Ukrainian authority will benefit from safety oversight and certification handbooks that meet international standards.
Training has been provided in Sweden and in Spain and numerous draft regulations have been developed to assist in achieving full compliance with international standards.
Pictures: CAA Norway/Pristina Airport