Thursday, January 17, 2013

■ KENYA: New Civil Aviation Law provides KCAA with framework necessary to attain FAA Cat 1 status; US flights to follow?

Kenya Civil Aviation Authority logoThe signing into law of The Civil Aviation 2013 Bill by Kenya's President Mwai Kibaki on Monday 14 January has presented the Kenyan Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) with the legal framework necessary to ensure safer, more secure airports and airspace. Conformity to internationally recognised standards could then lead to the possibility of long sought-after Kenya - US flights.

The new law provides for the regulation of aviation security, a growing concern in the terror-prone industry worldwide, though notable steps toward improving the overall calibre of security have been taken with Israel, arguably the world's most security conscious country, this week endorsing security arrangements put in place by the Kenyan government.
Results of Kenya's 2008 Safety Audit Information
Results of Kenya's 2008 USOAP Audit (ICAO)
Amongst the provisions of the Bill are:
  • To discharge international obligations of the State as set out  under article 12 of the Chicago Convention (which Kenya is a  party to) with a view to securing the highest practicable degree  of uniformity in regulations as well as enhancing the Authority’s  Safety Oversight Obligations;
  • To ensure the State’s compliance with the provisions of the  Convention on International Civil Aviation signed at Chicago on  7th December 1944, otherwise also known as the Chicago  Convention, by integrating the ICAO Standards and  Recommended Practices (SARPs) into our national legislation;
  • To address some of the findings of the ICAO USOAP (Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme) Audit of  2008 on Kenya so that Kenya is rated favourably by ICAO in so  far as aviation safety and security is concerned;
  • To establish an Aviation Tribunal and to provide for  compounding of offences under the Act with a view to provide  The Civil Aviation Bill, 2012 109  expedient dispute resolution mechanism and enforcement in  aviation matters. It is noteworthy that this was also a finding of  the ICAO USOAP Audit of 2008.
  • To provide for regulation of aviation security which is currently a  growing concern in the aviation industry, worldwide;
  • To  empower the Director General with limited powers to issue  exemptions on operational matters in consultation with the  Minister with a view to provide an avenue for compliance to the  regulations by alternative means;
  • To empower the Authority’s inspectors and to expand the scope  of inspection. The current Act, limits inspections to aircraft only;
Download a full copy of the Civil Aviation 2013 Bill here.

Kenya's past inability to attain "Category One" security status from the US Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) has been its main stumbling block in establishing a direct airlink with the US, with whom trade more than doubled in 2012
This is the law that will unlock our Category One status allowing direct flights between Kenya and the US,” said the KCAA’s director-general Hilary Kioko.
Source [BusinessDaily]

FAA norms demand compliance with its International Aviation Safety Assessments (IASA) Program. The FAA's foreign assessment program focuses on a country's ability, and not an individual air carrier's ability, to adhere to international standards and recommended practices for aircraft operations and maintenance established by the United Nation's technical agency for aviation, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

With an IASA Category 1 rating, Kenyan airlines can add flights and services to the United States and carry the code of U.S. carriers.