§ Mr. Sheerman
asked the Secretary of State for Trade what guarantees exist for British citizens travelling on foreign airlines operating out of the United Kingdom as to the quality of maintenance of their aircraft.
§ Mr. Tebbit
Under the provisions of article 37 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation (Chicago convention), it is the responsibility of the State of registry of an aircraft to ensure that the minimum standards of safety and competency laid down in annex 6 to that convention are fully complied with. For scheduled services my Department issues authorisations only to airline designated by their own Governments, who thereby assume responsibility for the full observance of this and other aspects of the Chicago convention.
To obtain an authorisation for a non-scheduled or charter service not covered by such a designation, an airline must produce adequate proof that its own national authority is satisfied in all respects with its competency and safety standards, and that these comply at least 499W with the international standards and recommended practices adopted under the convention.