The Pacific Aviation Safety Office (PASO) and the Pacific Region Infrastructure Facility (PRIF) have committed to work together in 2022 to enhance regional aviation development for the benefit of the people of Pacific region.
The two Pacific organisations signed a joint communique virtually on Thursday, 27 January 2022 to formally strengthen their regional collaboration and coordination including addressing the serious impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the aviation industry and economies of most Pacific Island States.
In the lead up to the next Regional Aviation Ministers Meeting (RAMM2) in June 2022, PASO and PRIF committed to working together to support and advance the ‘Port Moresby Declaration on Aviation Safety and Security’ for the advancement and improvement of the aviation sector for Pacific Island States.
PASO and PRIF also formally recognised the RAMM endorsed ‘Framework for Aviation in the Pacific’ which articulates how the Pacific region and aviation stakeholders will collaborate to realise an enhanced aviation system to benefit the Pacific.
The joint communique articulates each organisations responsibilities, including recognition of PASO’s role as the RAMM Secretariat, as well as regional aviation regulatory oversight, and PRIF’s role providing technical assistance support for aviation development.
“The Joint communique is an expression of our commitment to work together so that the RAMM deliverables are implemented. Our new partnership will address all aviation sectors, such as commercial, regulatory and operations for the progress of aviation in the region,’ said Mr Andrew Valentine, PASO’s General Manager.
“Our communique is a first for PASO and PRIF, and I am glad that we have ventured down this path to execute the Regional Ministers’ goals for regional aviation,” said Mr Valentine.
“We welcome the opportunity to assist PASO implement the RAMM deliverables. Our partnership provides an opportunity for PRIF to contribute to Pacific regional aviation recovery, which is a priority of our development partners,” said Mr Sean O’Sullivan, PRIF Coordination Office Team Leader.
A key focus of the new collaboration is producing a COVID-19 impact and recovery assessment for aviation in the Pacific. At the 2021 Regional Aviation Ministers Meeting, Ministers expressed concerns over the impacts of COVID-19 and tasked officials to conduct the impact assessment. PRIF is funding this assessment and is now working in collaboration with Landrum and Brown with the support of PASO.
The COVID-19 Impact and Recovery Assessment for Aviation in the Pacific will be presented to Aviation Officials consideration at their next meeting in April.