ICAO Amendment Process


This article describes the process of amending International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) SARPs. It explains the differences between the terms "adopted", "effective" and "applicable" which are used in the process.

The Amendment Process

The amendment process starts afeter the SARPs changes are agreed upon. The adoption date is the actual date that the amendment is adopted by the ICAO Council’s 36 Member States. Normally this occurs in March of a given calendar year and the Council is responsible for ICAO’s Governance decisions while our full Assembly (every three years) in not in session. The effective date is set as four months after the last day of the Council session when the adoption took place. A standard Council session normally takes four weeks. By this date the States must advise ICAO in case they do not approve the amendment. If more than 50 per cent of the States indicate disapproval, the amendment does not become effective (this has not happened so far). The applicability date is usually in November (eight months after adoption and approximately four months after the effective date) and is based on the November AIRAC date. By this date the States should be applying the amendment unless they have notified ICAO of differences between their regulations and the ICAO Standards in the amendment. The notification of differences has to be done at least one month before the applicability date.

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