The 23rd Ordinary Assembly of the Latin American Civil Aviation Commission (CLAC) opened at the Melia Cohiba Hotel in Havana and will be held for three days to examine current issues in the sector.
The highest authorities of civil aeronautics of Latin America and the Caribbean, the President of the Council of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu, as well as other personalities of this body are also attending this meeting, such as representatives of international civil aviation. Late in the 1950s, the first steps were taken towards the establishment of cooperation in the air transport field in the Latin American region. The three Regional Civil Aviation Conferences (CRAC) held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (1958), Montevideo, Uruguay (1959) and Bogota, Colombia (1962) set out the basic principles in this regard. These appointments considered that the region's states should take measures regarding the regulation of air transport. During 1968, through another meeting of aeronautical authorities, a Study Group was created to harmonize the different points of view regarding how a system of international cooperation in the field of civil aviation should be implemented. On July 1973, the Colombia Director of Civil Aeronautics called a Latin American Directors of Aeronautics Meeting, trying to revive the old 3rd CRAC ( 3rd Regional Civil Aviation Conference) project. The Latin American governmental integration in the field of civil aviation was thus included as one of the issues, a matter welcomed by the Plenary of the Conference, when a Working Group was created on the basis of documents very similar to those presented 11 years ago. This resulted in the creation of a Provisional Secretariat which was tasked, among other things, with carrying out a study on the basis of this institutionalization, including recommendations on actions to be taken. With this background, the Second Latin American Conference of Aeronautical Authorities was held in Mexico from December 11 to 14, 1973, to analyze the draft constitution of the Latin American Civil Aviation Commission. Fifteen Latin American states signed the CLAC Statute at that meeting, thus constituting the most important International Civil Aviation Organization in Latin America. Other countries soon joined, leading to the current integration of 22 states such as Argentina, Aruba, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama and Paraguay, Peru, Dominican Republic, Uruguay and Venezuela are also on the list. The General Assembly, the highest body of the Commission, meets every two years. It consists of the highest civil aviation authorities of the members, with the primary aim of establishing the regular work program and approving actions of its subordinate bodies. CLAC has convened up to the present 20 Ordinary and two Extraordinary Assemblies. Mexico, the State depositary of CLAC, hosted the First Extraordinary Assembly to celebrate the 25th Anniversary. The issues addressed by the organization include Transport and Air Policy, Airport Management and Environment, Training, Air Navigation, Operational Safety, and Facilitation and Safety.