Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation has stated to put forward the process of splitting sole civil aviation body of the country the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) into 2 entities in upcoming session of parliament.
CAAN has been functioning as both regulator and service provider with no clear differentiation over their duties and responsibilities. Delay in the process of splitting CAAN has made European Commission (EC) dissatisfied resulting Nepal to be black listed in EC ‘Air safety list’.
EC has been displeased due to lack of progress in making a law to split CAAN into regulatory body and service provider as promised.
The coming session of Parliament is expected to start at end of this month and Tourism Minister Rabindra Adhikari stated that the planning has already been briefed to public Account Committee of Parliament and the Law Ministry has also approved the draft.
After getting approval from the cabinet, the process will be immediately put forward in the parliament as Nepal being in black list of EU has been problematic for Nepali Carriers who plan to operate to other countries.
The process was due to be submitted in October but was again delayed to coming session which if passed by parliament will replace the Civil Aviation Act 1959 and Nepal Civil Aviation Authority Act 1996. This will make CAAN act as a regulator while a separate Airport and Air Navigation Services will be set up to operate as a service provider.
While the service provider (CAAN) will be responsible for licensing and regulating aviation professionals and pilots, engineers, air traffic controllers, airlines and aerodromes, the service provider will be responsible for airport management, terminal management, ground handling, airport security, rescue and firefighting, airport infrastructure development, airport fee and tax collection and air traffic control.
Nepali delegates have been presenting various presentation during different meeting with EU and ICAO delegates on improvement done by Nepal to address Air safety. Though various possibility was hinted but EU has again listed Nepal in its Blacklist for 5 consecutive year.