Taiwan needs to participate in ICAO for aviation safety: official

As one of more than 300 flight information regions in the world, Taiwan must be a part of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to ensure that its aviation regulations connect seamlessly with international standards, a Taiwanese official said Monday outside the 39th ICAO Assembly venue.

Taiwan deeply regrets that it has not been invited to this year's ICAO Assembly despite efforts made by various sides, Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) Deputy Director Ho Shu-ping (???) said at a news conference, shortly after arriving in Montreal at the head of a seven-member delegation.

Even without an invitation, the government decided to send a delegation to Montreal to express its appreciation to countries that have shown their support for Taiwan, she said.

Also, the government wants to highlight the need for Taiwan to participate in the ICAO Assembly meaningfully and with dignity to obtain first-hand information crucial to maintaining aviation safety and contribute to the global aviation system, she added.

She pointed out that being excluded from the ICAO has caused tremendous trouble to Taiwan, because Taiwan has to rely on secondhand or purchased information to keep pace with international aviation regulations, which she said can easily lead to omissions.

Whatever the reason Taiwan was not invited, it cannot negate the necessity and justification for Taiwan to take part in the ICAO Assembly, she stressed.

The ICAO is a United Nations specialized agency responsible for establishing worldwide aviation policies.

The 39th ICAO assembly will be held from Sept. 27 to Oct. 7 at the ICAO headquarters in Montreal, but Taiwan has not been invited to the event, most likely because of the objections from Beijing.

In 2013, Taiwan was represented at the 38th ICAO assembly by Shen Chi (??), then-director-general of the CAA, who was invited as a special guest of then-ICAO Council President Roberto Kobeh Gonzalez.

That marked Taipei's first representation at the ICAO assembly since losing its seat in the United Nations to Beijing in 1971.

Cross-Taiwan Strait relations have cooled since President Tsai Ing-wen (???) took office on May 20, and opposition from Beijing is widely believed to be the main reason behind the ICAO's decision to not invite Taiwan this year.

Beijing has taken a harder line against Taiwan because the new administration has refused to accept the idea that Taiwan and China belong to one China as the political foundation for cross-strait dialogue and exchanges.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel