The International Air Transport Association (IATA) hosted an historic aviation security summit with the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS). IATA Director General and CEO Giovanni Bisignani and DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano spearheaded a new era of industry/government cooperation to improve aviation security around the world.
‘The aviation industry is committed to keeping the global skies safe and secure. We live in a global world with global connectivity and global threats.
The challenge is to protect the benefits of aviation connectivity and eliminate the threats. Governments and industry have the same goals but different expertise. Governments understand the threats and the tools needed to mitigate them. Industry has the operational expertise for effective implementation.
Working together is the only way forward,’ said Bisignani.
The summit was held at IATA’s headquarters in Geneva and included the Secretary General of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), top executives from 25 airlines as well as participants from the US government.
Bisignani commended the fresh approach of the Obama administration to proactively engage industry. ‘We applaud Secretary Napolitano’s commitment to engage industry and find workable and effective solutions.’ A single meeting cannot solve all the security challenges we face but it is a major step in the right direction. We had a lot to teach each other and today is the start of a regular high-level dialogue on this critical issue.