Airspace Q4 2018: Roadmap for the future

17 December 2018

The ICAO 13th Air Navigation Conference (AN-Conf/13) – with the theme of From Development to Implementation – provided a forum for detailed discussions on the future of air traffic management.

Technical, operational, infrastructure and safety elements were discussed by two committees – the Air Navigation Committee and the Aviation Safety Committee.

In Committee A (Air Navigation), CANSO presented nine working papers, co-signed four working papers that were presented by industry partners and intervened on more than 40 papers from States and international organisations. Some of the interventions were detailed while others were simply providing CANSO support for a presented paper. All CANSO interventions resulted in positive feedback.

CANSO papers called for States and ICAO to enable investment in ATM infrastructure; harmonise the approach to standards around the world; adopt a performance-based approach to regulation; embrace new technologies and airspace users; and tackle cybersecurity to help improve the safety, efficiency and effectiveness of ATM.

In Committee B (Safety), CANSO did not present any working papers but did intervene on 11 different papers. Again, there was positive feedback on CANSO interventions.

CANSO also had an active presence outside the Conference itself, offering a wealth of ATM information and facilitating engagement between CANSO Members and industry acquaintances to strengthen relationships and create new ones.

As CANSO’s working papers were received positively and supported by many States, action items contained in the papers have been included in the AN-Conf/13 Final Report. It means CANSO positions on key ATM priorities are included in the Conference recommendations and will be forwarded to the ICAO 40th Assembly in 2019. They will then be included in the budget and work plan from ICAO for the 2019–2022 triennium.

CANSO Director General, Jeff Poole, says that the decisions made at AN-Conf/13 will facilitate and provide further impetus to the tremendous improvements in air traffic management that are already happening, and which will increase in pace in the coming years.

“We will now work together with ICAO, States and industry partners to implement the decisions and fully exploit the opportunities they offer and facilitate,” he continues. “CANSO will also play a key role in evolving and ensuring delivery of the ICAO Global Air Navigation Plan and its Aviation System Block Upgrades (ASBUs) and the revised Global Aviation Safety Plan. Effective implementation is crucial, so I am pleased that ICAO has accepted my suggestion to form a small group to ensure that we have a common understanding of what is required, the challenges and opportunities, and how best to speed up implementation across the globe.”

“The Thirteenth Air Navigation Conference delivered important decisions for improved ATM that will contribute to global connectivity and the economic and social benefits of aviation,” Poole concluded. “With good cooperation from all stakeholders, these decisions provide a strong foundation for all levels of airspace to be managed safely, effectively and seamlessly for any airspace user and to be able to embrace new technologies and procedures now and in the years to come.”

All papers can be downloaded from the CANSO website.



  Download article as a PDF


  • Airspace Magazine
  • Conferences
  • Cyber security
  • PBN

Subscribe to the CANSO publications