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Civil aviation operations are inextricably linked to government policies and services. National governments certify aircraft, operators of aircraft, operation of aircraft that fly in their airspace, and control and usually operate air traffic management systems. Those governments in turn have a number of national objectives that influence their views of civil aviation – such as security, economic competitiveness, and environment. Aircraft, however, are built for global, not national markets, and thus the industry has a strong interest in harmonizing government policies towards civil aviation to the maximum degree possible. ICAO is the forum in which much of that harmonization activity takes place.

ICCAIA has therefore traditionally focused its efforts on specific technical issues that are the subject of work in ICAO that affect the products manufactured by the aerospace industry. These include such subjects as international aircraft noise and engine emissions standards, aircraft safety, aviation security, air traffic management, and aviation financial and liability issues. As the aerospace industry manufactures products for a global marketplace, ICCAIA members are generally desirous of universal standards that are accepted by all governments. ICCAIA takes the position that ICAO is the appropriate UN forum to determine such standards.

Furthermore, ICCAIA and its member associations believe that such standards should be based on scientific analysis of the issue in question, and be realistic in terms of technology that is actually available to industry. Additionally, such analysis should include cost benefit analysis, to ensure that new standards to benefit the general public are cost effective and the most efficient approach possible.