In view of Covid-19, ICAO symposium to raise awareness on aviation security

The ICAO event seeks to delineate the benefits of an effective security culture, with experts sharing the best practices to achieve that

In view of Covid-19, ICAO symposium to raise awareness on aviation security
Security measures being implemented at Ranchi airport in India. Image courtesy: Twitter/@AAI_Official

The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) would convene its fourth annual Global Aviation Security Symposium (AVSEC2020) online on December 18. The symposium would look to highlight the importance of raising awareness on aviation security, particularly in view of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The theme of the symposium is 'Improving Security Culture by Connection the Dots'. This assumes salience also because 2021 has been designated as the ICAO Year of Security Culture. The event seeks to delineate the benefits of a strong and effective security culture, with experts sharing the best practices to achieve that. Tips would be provided on the ways of establishing, changing and maintaining good security behaviours among the aviation community where security should be everyone's responsibility. 

According to the tentative programme, the symposium would open with remarks by Mohamed Khalifa Rahma, Director, Air Transport Bureau, ICAO.

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This would be followed by a session on Security Culture: Security is Everyone's Responsibility. The panellists include Anna Svedberg, Head of Security, Stockholm Arlanda and Bromma Airports, Swedavia AB, Sweden; Michele Salgado Ferreira Arcúrio, Civil Aviation Regulation Specialist, National Civil Aviation Agency (ANAC) Brazil; Dwayne MacInTosh, Director, Corporate Safety and Security, Greater Toronto Airports Authority, Canada; Yves Mabbe, Corporate Security Director, Cargolux Airlines International SA Luxembourg; and Aiden Yeo, Senior Assistant Director, Security Policy, International Relations and Security Division, Ministry of Transport, Singapore. The session would be moderated by Sylvain Lefoyer, Deputy Director, Aviation Security and Facilitation, ICAO. 

The session would provide a platform for discussing security culture as a critical core business value: 'security is everyone's responsibility', and would seek to find a balance between security, safety, facilitation and the passenger experience.  

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The second session would be one on Year of Security Culture: Inauguration. This would give an opportunity to deliberate on the importance of an effective and sustainable security culture. This becomes all the more significant in the backdrop of 2021 being 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks on the US. Speakers would include Michèle Coninsx, Assistant Secretary-General, Executive Director, Counter-Terrorism Committee, Executive Directorate (UNCTED); Henrik Hololei, Director-General, Mobility and Transport, European Commission; Luis Felipe de Oliveira, Director General, Airports Council International (ACI World); and Rannia Leontaridi OBE FRSA, Director General for Aviation, Department for Transport, United Kingdom.  

The event would conclude with the Year of Security Culture inauguration remarks by ICAO Secretary General Fang Liu. There would also be a presentation of the Year of Security Culture rollout programme and an official inauguration ceremony. 

Security culture is a set of norms, beliefs, values, attitudes and assumptions inherent in the day-to-day operation of an organisation. It is mirrored in the actions and behaviours of all entities and personnel within that organisation. 

The Global Aviation Security Plan (GASeP) offers guidance for setting priorities at the international, regional and state levels. It creates a framework within which the ICAO, states and stakeholders can work together to fulfil shared objectives. The plan, furthermore, supports the ICAO's 'No Country Left Behind' initiative for addressing common challenges. The GASeP provides guidance for jointly promoting aviation security. 

The GASeP comprises five priority areas. One of them relates to developing security culture and human capability, stating, "The promotion of effective security culture is critical to achieving good security outcomes. A strong security culture must be developed from the top management across and within every organisation. The existence of a well-trained, motivated and professional workforce is a critical prerequisite for effective aviation security."