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ANNEX 1 Personnel Licensing

As long as air travel cannot do without pilots and other air and ground personnel, their competence, skills and training will remain the essential guarantee for efficient and safe operations.

Adequate personnel training and licensing also instill confidence between States, leading to international recognition and acceptance of personnel qualifications and licences and greater trust in aviation on the part of the traveller.

Standards and Recommended Practices for the licensing of flight crew members (pilots, flight engineers and flight navigators), air traffic controllers, aeronautical station operators, maintenance technicians and flight dispatchers , are provided by Annex 1 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation.

Related training manuals provide guidance to States for the scope and depth of training curricula which will ensure that the confidence in safe air navigation, as intended by the Convention and Annex 1, is maintained.

These training manuals also provide guidance for the training of other aviation personnel such as aerodrome emergency crews, flight operations officers, radio operators and individuals involved in other related disciplines.

Today's aircraft operations are so diverse and complex that protection must be provided against the possibility, however remote, of total system breakdown due to either human error or failure of a system component.

The human being is the vital link in the chain of aircraft operations but is also by nature the most flexible and variable. Proper training is necessary so as to minimize human error and provide able, skilful, proficient and competent personnel.

Annex 1 and ICAO training manuals describe the skills necessary to build proficiency at various jobs, thereby contributing to occupational competency.

The medical standards of the Annex, in requiring periodic health examinations, serve as an early warning for possible incapacitating medical conditions and contribute to the general health of flight crews and controllers.

The Human Factors programme addresses known human capabilities and limitations, providing States with basic information on this vital subject as well as the material necessary to design proper training programmes. ICAO's objective is to improve safety in aviation by making States more aware of, and responsive to, the importance of human factors in civil aviation operations.

Licensing is the act of authorizing defined activities which should otherwise be prohibited due to the potentially serious results of such activities being performed improperly. An applicant for a licence must meet certain stated requirements proportional to the complexities of the task to be performed.

The licensing examination serves as a regular test of physical fitness and performance ensuring independent control. As such, training and licensing together are critical for the achievement of overall competency.

One of ICAO’s main tasks in the field of personnel licensing is to foster the resolution of differences in licensing requirements and to ensure that international licensing standards are kept in line with current practices and probable future developments.

This is ever more crucial as the flight crew will be exposed to increasing traffic density and airspace congestion, highly complicated terminal area patterns and more sophisticated equipment.

To accomplish this task, Annex I is regularly amended to reflect the rapidly changing environment.

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