The Bahamian government continues to make progress towards the enhancement of its aircraft registry and the ratification of the Cape Town Convention on International Interest in Mobile Equipment.

Aircraft registry

The Bahamas Civil Aviation Authority (BCAA) and the Aviation Steering Committee (ASC) engaged a consultant firm to conduct an on-site baseline gap analysis in order to measure and determine any regulatory compliance recourse needed to achieve a successful aircraft registry. The consultants engaged several industry experts (familiar with the regulatory standards of the UK Civil Aviation Authority, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO)) to conduct the gap analysis alongside the BCAA. These experts provide extensive regulatory and technical knowledge that will help the BCAA to meet the standards set out by the ICAO, EASA, FAA, Transport Canada and other aviation organisations.

The ASC carried out a review of the gap analysis report, which was favourable, and recommended to Minister of Aviation Dionisio D'Aguilar, that the BCAA and the minister enter into a memorandum of understanding in anticipation of engaging the consultants to move forward with enhancement of the aircraft registry. The ASC is optimistic that the memorandum of understanding will be executed soon, if not already.

Cape Town Convention

The ASC has presented draft legislation to implement the Cape Town Convention to the Attorney General's Office for its review. The ASC is expecting this draft legislation to be approved and thereafter presented to the Cabinet before the next government budget communication in Summer 2019. The ASC was greatly assisted by Secretary General of the Aviation Working Group, Jeffrey Wool and his team.

Comment

The aviation industry remains optimistic that the aircraft registry will be enhanced and the Cape Town Convention ratified. On 1 and 2 March 2019 The Bahamas Financial Services Board held its annual International Business and Finance Summit and, for the first time, acknowledged the aviation sector's potential and significant contribution to the financial services sector.

For further information on this topic please contact Llewellyn V Boyer-Cartwright at Callenders & Co by telephone (+1 242 322 2511) or email (lboyer-cartwright@callenders-law.com). The Callenders & Co website can be accessed at www.callenders-law.com.

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