THE NORDIC DELEGATION TO
THE INTERNATIONAL CIVIL AVIATION ORGANIZATION
NORDICAO is a seven State rotation delegation to ICAO with the mission of working together for safe, secure and sustainable aviation. The delegation has a permanent office in Montreal, Canada at the International Civil Aviation Organization, a United Nations special agency for aviation. NORDICAO is currently headed by FINLAND who was elected to the ICAO Council at the 40th General Assembly of ICAO in 2019. Finland will hold this seat for the next three years.
The Nordic delegation to ICAO is based upon a joint agreement between the Civil Aviation Authorities of the Nordic States. The Scandinavian Delegation, known as the Scandinavian Secretariat founded in 1944 originally comprised Denmark, Norway and Sweden. Finland joined in 1976, and, to reflect this inclusion the name was changed to the Nordic Delegation. In 1980, Iceland became a member, and as of 16 December 2013, Estonia and Latvia also joined the Nordic Delegation. The formal name of the Delegation is that of the State which at any given time holds the member seat in the ICAO Council.
The cooperation between the Nordic States goes all the way back to the Chicago Conference in 1944 where Norway, as a newly-elected Member of the Interim Council, was considered a Representative for the Nordic geographical area. The Interim Council, first elected on December 6, 1944, consisted of 20 Delegates.
Three years later, in May 1947, the first Assembly of the International Civil Aviation Organization took place in Windsor Hall, Montreal. Neither Norway nor Denmark ran for a seat in the Council, in order to facilitate the election of Sweden. The Swedish delegate expressed his gratitude for his State's election to the Council, commenting at the time that the actions of Norway and Denmark demonstrated;
“Further evidence of that spirit of cooperation which the Scandinavian countries have already shown on international air routes, where they are, in fact, operating a joint airline service.”
The reference he made was to Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS), which was founded on August 1,1946, a company that still operates domestic and international routes to and from the Scandinavian countries.
Today, the Nordic Delegation to ICAO represents a combined population of approximately 25 million, spread over a land area of 3.5 million km². The airspace controlled by the five Nordic States totals approximately 8,4 million km², comprising a vast area in Northern Europe and over the North Atlantic equivalent to 82 percent of the European landmass or the entire landmass of Brazil.
One achievement that has arisen from the close cooperation between the five Nordic States through the years is the remarkably harmonized national legislation within the five States regarding civil aviation regulation. This has been made possible in part because a Nordic Representative has been steadily maintained on the ICAO Council and in the Air Navigation Commission. The Nordic States have succeeded in participating actively in ICAO’s programmes, harmonizing to the fullest extent possible the Nordic position in all ICAO matters and ratifying international Conventions made under the auspices of ICAO.
MESSAGE FROM THE REPRESENTATIVE OF FINLAND
"Together for safe, secure and sustainable aviation"
Mr. Samuli Vuokila in seven phrases
Airline captain, 7500 flight hours
Civil Aviation Authority, multiple positions since 2006
Head of safety and quality assurance in an airline management
Member of ICAO Air Navigation Commission 2011 – 2014
Chief Adviser to DGCA Finland
Alternate Representative of Sweden on the Council of ICAO 2016 – 2019
Representative of Finland on the Council of ICAO 2019-2022
I emphasize that ICAO’s role in maintaining and promoting safe, secure and sustainable civil aviation in the world is of fundamental importance and I am proud to work on it. I see that in the future ICAO’s rule-making function will need to evolve towards performance- and risk-based approach instead of the traditional prescriptive regulatory framework. This path has significant challenges, in particular as it relates to the varying oversight abilities of these kinds of rules. Implementation support and guidance play a very important role. This is a function which can be done on multiple levels and new initiatives to improve need to be sought in an attempt to raise the effective implementation of ICAO provisions.
ICAO will benefit greatly on the increasing internal efficiency where member States play a key role both as facilitators and every now and then, as role models. Sharing best practices is a very efficient way of international cooperation. Experience and examples of new ways of doing business are worth their weight in gold, everyone does not have to try to do things from the very beginning but benefit from the experience of others.
I personally remain committed to support ICAO’s work in a collaborative, open minded fashion. The best results in all international activities are the ones where all have their opinions taken into account and the end result is acceptable to all. Global civil aviation is not possible without the cooperation of all actors working towards the same goal. This is where ICAO has its natural place, the home of International Civil Aviation.
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Samuli Vuokila, Representative of Finland on the Council of ICAO 2019-2022
Valdis Asta Adalsteinsdottir from Iceland, Alternate Representative of Finland on the Council of ICAO
Bernt Tore Larsen from Norway, Member of the Air Navigation Commission and Alternate Representative of Finland on the Council of ICAO
Tetiana Karpova from Ukraine, NORDICAO Administrative Assistant