CAAP hopeful to get FAA upgrade rating next year

November 7, 2012 12:00 pm 

MANILA, Nov. 7 – Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) director general William Hotchkiss has expressed optimism to get favorable report from International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) that would convince the Federation Aviation Authority (FAA) to bring back the Philippines to Category 1 rating early next year.

”We’re going to get a draft report about November 15 and then get the final by February next year. We are confident we are going to get all of those,” Hotchkiss said during the Senate deliberations of the proposed P36.98 billion 2013 budget of the Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) on Tuesday.

Hotchkiss told the Senate sub-committee on finance that in the recent evaluation, the ICAO Coordinate Validation Mission found “some deficiencies” specifically the aircraft registration and the training of inspectors.

”It’s the aircraft registration your honor which we think we can address in a matter of 10 days and the other one is in the operations which we are continuously addressing. This refers to training of our inspectors,” he said when asked what are the ?poremaining deficiencies that have to be addressed in order to get a passing mark from ICAO.

When curiously inquired by Senator Panfilo Lacson if there are ‘colorum’ aircrafts, Hotchkiss replied “there might be some.”

Hotchkiss, however, failed to come out with how many airplanes were not registered with the CAAP.

”That’s what we are addressing right now,” he answered Lacson.

In a media interview, Lacson said the senators were surprised by Hotchkiss’ claim that there might be airplanes which are not registered.

”So if there are colorum buses along EDSA (Epifanio delos Santos Avenue), there are also colorum airplanes,” Lacson reacted.

The ICAO downgraded the CAAP (then named Air Transportation Office) from Category 1 to Category 2 status due to 89 “significant safety concerns”.

In 2008, the FAA also downgraded the Philippines to Category 2 in 2008, citing significant regulatory, oversight and management shortcomings.

The downgrading prompted Congress to review ATO’s mandate, leading to the enactment of Republic Act 9497 abolishing the ATO and replacing it with CAAP. (PNA)

LGI/JFM

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