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PASO AGM Reaffirms Strong Commitment To Pacific Regional Aviation Safety And Security

Pacific regional aviation safety and security and the importance of the Pacific Aviation Safety Office (PASO) during the COVID-19 pandemic was recognised by the PASO Council of Directors at their Annual General Meeting on Wednesday, 1 July 2020.

There was strong participation at the Council’s first virtual AGM from Council Members, who reinforced their desire to support and promote the importance of PASO during the COVID-19 pandemic. The AGM was attended by nine of the 10 signatories to the Pacific Islands Civil Aviation Safety and Security Treaty (PICASST) and three Associate Members.

COVID-19 disruption to Pacific aviation safety and security, and its impact on PASO’s governance and operations was the focus of the AGM. The PASO Council recognised the generous ongoing financial support from the New Zealand government to strengthen PASO with new $2.2million (NZD) funding provided in April.

The PASO Council also recommended re-scheduling the Regional Aviation Minister’s Meeting (RAMM) to early 2021 to continue to strategically progress and strengthen Pacific regional aviation and COVID-19 response and recovery.

“The pandemic has been devastating to the global economy, with no harder hit than the aviation sector. Disruption to aviation connectivity has been extreme and appears likely to remain that way for some time. Jobs across the world in the travel and tourism sector have been lost, and more are at risk. The future remains uncertain,” said outgoing PASO Chairperson, Mr. Wilson Sagati, OBE.

“We now face considerable COVID-19 disruptions to trade, tourism and regional connectivity and our region will need to be reactivated with safe aviation systems ready to respond when borders are opened once again.”

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