The Eastern Caribbean Civil Aviation Authority (ECCAA) evolved from the Directorate of Civil Aviation - Eastern Caribbean States, which may be considered as one of the oldest, if not the oldest institutions in the Eastern Caribbean region. From inception, the Directorate was seen as a vehicle for facilitating a collective and uniform approach to Civil Aviation matters affecting the then Windward and Leeward Islands, which now comprise the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Group.
A Director of Civil Aviation was first appointed in 1957 by the Government of the United Kingdom. In 1961, the responsibilities of the post were advertised as "to advise the Governments of the Windward and Leeward Islands on all matters relating to Civil Aviation including airfields and airport developments, the implementation of ICAO conventions and the adequacy of air services."
Dissolution of the West Indies Federation in 1962 and reversion of the islands to the former colonial status meant that the Directorate was again exercising the functions on behalf of the UK Government.
Administration of the Directorate was assigned to the Antigua and Barbuda government until 1968 when the West Indies Associate States (WISA) Council of Ministers assumed responsibility for its operation.
In 1982, the Directorate became an Institution of the OECS through the Treaty of Basseterre, which established the OECS.
At the 35th Meeting of the OECS Heads of Governments, in 2002, the Heads decided that:
a fully autonomous body should be established with the responsibility to regulate civil aviation activities within OECS Member States; and,
the body should be self-financed
Acting upon this mandate, in October 2003 at St Georges, Grenada, the OECS Ministers responsible for civil aviation signed the Agreement establishing ECCAA; however, this agreement had to be given legal effect through an act of Parliament in each Member State.
By October 2004, five Member States had passed the Eastern Caribbean Civil Aviation Authority Agreement Act, which signaled the ECCAA's birth.
Who they are
The ECCAA is the OECS Institution responsible for regulating aviation safety and security within the OECS Member States in accordance with international standards.
Five Member States of the OECS are signatories to the Chicago Convention, which established the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). Accordingly, they are obligated to meet the Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPS) enshrined in ICAO's eighteen annexes. They agree on certain principles and arrangements in order that international civil aviation may be developed in a safe and orderly manner. They must collaborate to the highest degree to achieve standardisation and harmonisation in regulations, rules, standards, procedures and practices. Thus, they should establish and implement a system that enables them to satisfactorily discharge their obligations and responsibilities.
They therefore provide civil aviation safety and security oversight through a system of inspecting, investigating, monitoring and licensing; and regulate civil aviation activities in all Member States consistent with ICAO SARPS.
What they do
ECCAA's purpose is to:
Regulate civil aviation safety and security
Develop harmonized civil aviation regulations, policies and practices by applying ICAO SARPS uniformly
Establish and maintain a regulatory environment that promotes safety and efficiency in the civil aviation industry
Create a secure environment for the civil aviation industry
Provide technical and specialized civil aviation services
Undertake and coordinate studies for ensuring the sustained development of civil aviation in the region
Collaborate with national, regional and international agencies and organizations to further the development of civil aviation
Where is Eastern Caribbean Civil Aviation Authority (ECCAA)