Cablegate: France: Icao Assembly Demarches On Key Positions And
DE RUEHFR #2927 1871455
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 061455Z JUL 07 ZDK
FM AMEMBASSY PARIS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 8785
INFO RUEHMT/AMCONSUL MONTREAL 0137
RHMCSUU/FAA NATIONAL HQ WASHINGTON DC
RUEAHLC/HOMELAND SECURITY CENTER WASHINGTON DC
UNCLAS PARIS 002927
FOR STATE EB/TRA, IO/T
FAA FOR FILIPPATOS, REIMOLD, BURLESON
TSA FOR MACCREERY
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAIR ECON ETRD SENV FR
SUBJECT: FRANCE: ICAO ASSEMBLY DEMARCHES ON KEY POSITIONS AND
REF A) STATE 77572 REF. B) STATE 83246
1. (SBU) Econoff and FAA senior representative discussed reftel
demarches June 28 with Jean-Michel Bour, head of the Office of
International Affairs at the French Civil Aviation authority.
Though key advisors on aviation and environment have not yet been
officially appointed in the recently reorganized ministry of Ecology
and Sustainable Development, we also provided the demarches to
Michel Fremont, Chief of Staff to Minister Jean-Louis Borloo, and to
Michel Wachenheim, who is expected to be named as the principal
advisor to State Minister for Transportation Dominique Bussereau.
2. (SBU) On U.S. positions regarding the Universal Safety Oversight
Program (USOAP), and other positions on Safety Enhancement and
Oversight, Bour said that he saw no major incompatibilities with
French views. He was open to the possibility of co-sponsorship of a
paper on USOAP, but thought that a regional approach would make more
sense, and recommended that we approach ECAC about this. U.S.
support for European papers, most of which had been completed and
were being distributed by ECAC, would be a logical complement to
this request he said. One area where France had reservations about
U.S. views was on the publication of security audit information.
France was "very, very reticent" about exchange of such information,
3. (SBU) On reform more generally, a special meeting of ECAC in
late August would adopt a common European position on reform of the
Chicago Convention. Bour also noted that France agreed on the need
for greater efficiency within ICAO, but felt that clear and detailed
proposals were still lacking, for example on increased oversight in
Africa. In what he characterized as a useful initiative, he said
that ICAO President Kobeh planned to call a Ministerial on the eve
of the General Assembly to help build political will for change.
Minister of State for Transport Bussereau had been invited.
4. (SBU) As he has in past conversations, Bour made clear that he
hoped the ICAO assembly would prove a step on the way to integrating
aviation emissions into a post-Kyoto system. The EU's ETS system
was already in motion, and would eventually have to include foreign
airlines and international flights to maintain competitive balance.
He rejected our view that this could only occur on the basis of
"mutual agreement." He was intrigued however by the idea that some
kind of recognized "equivalence" with systems that other regions
might adopt independently could provide a way around this dilemma.
If ICAO set broad objectives and defined the criteria for
equivalence, other regions would be free to adopt their own regimes
(as Australia was proposing to do). The EU could then recognize
other regimes as equivalent to its own. How this would solve the
practical issue of foreign airlines and international flights being
subject to ETS, or respond to our objections that such a requirement
is contrary to international law, was unclear from his response.