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Indo-US aviation ties get a boost

FAA and the ministry of civil aviation sign MoA paving way for technical aid from US, reports Gaurav Choudhury.

india Updated: Nov 13, 2006 21:28 IST

The Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) of the United States and the ministry of civil aviation signed a memorandum of agreement (MoA) on Monday paving the way for technical assistance from US on a host of aviation related matters. But officials said the pact did not cover security aspects, and mainly concerned logistics and administration.

The cabinet had approved the signing of this agreement in May this year. "The agreement provides for assistance by the FAA to the civil aviation sector in India in developing and modernising the civil aviation infrastructure in the managerial, operational and technical areas," said a civil aviation ministry statement.

Besides technical and managerial expertise, the FAA will provide training for Indian civil aviation personnel. It will also provide assistance in inspection and calibration of civil aviation equipment and air navigation facility in India.

FAA administrator Marlon Blakey said that the MoA is "not really a security agreement. It is a bilateral aviation safety agreement".

The MoA is an umbrella agreement and would have many subordinate agreements as and when signed with different agencies such as the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), the Airports Authority of India (AAI) and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).

"The agreement is in the nature of a framework agreement, which would create enabling provisions for seeking specific assistance from the FAA. All assistance under this agreement will be on the basis of reimbursement of costs," the statement said.

Civil aviation minister Praful Patel said that India would receive guidance and expertise of the FAA which would be helpful to manage the volume of aviation traffic in the coming years.

Email gaurav.choudhury@hindustantimes.com