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Cablegate: Thailand Working to Respond to Faa Report

VZCZCXYZ0005
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHBK #6037 3392340
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 052340Z DEC 07
FM AMEMBASSY BANGKOK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0949
INFO RHMCSUU/FAA NATIONAL HQ WASHINGTON DC
RULSDMK/DEPT OF TRANSPORTATION WASHDC

UNCLAS BANGKOK 006037

SIPDIS

AMEMBASSY SINGAPORE FOR FAA REP

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAIR ICAO ECON TH
SUBJECT: Thailand Working to Respond to FAA Report

REF: SECSTATE 159313

1. Summary: Econcouns delivered the FAA aviation safety assessment
report to the Director General of the Thai Department of Civil
Aviation (DCA). The DCA is fully aware of the implications of a
possible downgrade to Category Two and is working to remedy the
FAA-identified deficiency. The Director General reported that he
expects an amendment to modernize portions of the Air Navigation Act
of 1954 to pass the National Legislative Assembly (NLA) this month.
He also voiced his opposition to an Airports of Thailand (AOT) plan
to operate two international airports in Bangkok. End summary.

2. On December 4, Econcouns delivered reftel talking points, report,
and letter to Chaisak Angkasuwan, Director General of the DCA.
Chaisak said the DCA has been working hard to rectify the deficiency
identified in the FAA report from last July and has proposed a
meeting of the Civil Aviation Board (CAB) chaired by the Transport
Minister on December 17. In this meeting, Chaisak said, the DCA
will propose CAB model regulations according to the FAA and ICAO
recommendations. The regulations, which address concerns raised in
the FAA report, will be effective once published in the Royal
Gazette, which the Director General said should happen by the end of
December.

3. Chaisak also reported that today the scrutinizing committee of
the NLA will finalize the amendment to Chapter 4 - Certificate of
Air Worthiness and Journey Log Book - of the Air Navigation Act of
2497 B.E. (1954 C.E.). The bill will then be forwarded to the NLA
for the second and third reading and is expected to pass by the end
of this year. Chaisak said the amendments to the Air Navigation Act
will serve to enhance Thailand's modern aviation business including
aviation products certification.

4. Chaisak also noted that he is opposed to a proposal by AOT to
re-open Don Muang Airport to international flights. On this issue,
he agrees with the Thai Transport Minister, THAI Airways, and United
Airlines, all of whom have stated publicly that the new
Suvaranabhumi Airport should upgraded to operate all international
flights out of Bangkok.

Boyce

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