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ICAN2015 Air Services Negotiation Event has taken place with participation of 95 countries...

ICAO Air Services Negotiation Event (ICAN2015) was hosted by Turkey in Antalya between 19-23 October 2015. Turkey, which had hosted ICAN for the first time in 2009, organised an ICAN with the highest level of participation to date with 95 countries participating. The conference, where 60 companies and 8 international organizations attended as well as the member states, and where the tourism organizations were invited in line with the ICAO's decision, started with the motto "The Country where Continents and Cultures Meet" with an opening ceremony on October 19th.

In his speech at the Opening Ceremony, ICAO's President Dr Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu indicated that ICAN/2015 was the event with highest level of participation to date, which was a significant indicator of the importance of aviation for Turkey, for the States and for our economies. President Aliu pointed out the growth of the States' flight networks and increase in the number of destinations as a result of binary air services negotiations, and stated that 3 billion of passengers and 50 million tons of freight were transported worldwide, making the air transport a driving force for all sectors and for national economies in particular, emphasizing that 60 percent of tourists travelled by air worldwide.

The host of ICAN2015, Director General of Civil Aviation Bilal Ekşi, welcomed the guests, expressing his pleasure of being the host of the event in Turkey, the meeting point of the continents and cultures, and stated that the most important factor for increasing possibilities of collaboration between countries was connectivity, and that the ICAN event was an important platform to establish such connections and improve the flight networks and relationships. Director General Ekşi reminded that Turkey has nominated for 2016 ICAO Council membership, also adding that Turkish civil aviation in addition to its current potential market has contributed considerably to global aviation system with the adaptation of international aviation regulation to national regulations and with its cooperation with other countries in the region.

Ministry of Transportation, Maritime Affairs and Communications Deputy Secretary Dr. Özkan Poyraz in his speech said that Turkey is an important hub with its 240+ flight points worldwide between Asia and Europe, at an important junction from where it took only three hours or less to fly to 41 different countries and five hours or less to 66 different countries, emphasizing that Istanbul's 3rd Airport designed to reinforce these links further was scheduled to commence operations in 2017.

Mr. Yıldırım Ak, Deputy Minister of Culture and Tourism, noted that transportation was an important factor increasing the demand in tourism and the ease of transportation, thanks to the developments in aviation, had an important role on the development of tourism in Turkey.

In the sessions after the Opening Ceremony on Day 1, the activities of ICAO including liberalization of air transport, economic growth based on connectivity and new legal arrangements, as well as the sustainable growth objectives of the UN were addressed. Following the presentation by DGCA on the developments in Turkish civil aviation, CEOs of the airlines based in Turkey gave speeches to inform the audience about the developments in the sector. On Day 1, the program continued with the opening of the fairground, where each participating agency and organization had a booth, with participation of international civil aviation organizations and member country representatives.

Within the duration of ICAN2015 where ICAO member countries held air transport negotiations, approximately 600 bilateral air services negotiations were conducted and as a result of signed off agreements, international flight networks of the countries expanded and new flight routes were established.

Turkey held bilateral negotiations with 52 countries and with 36 of these countries agreements were signed. As a result of these agreements, which were revised to provide a frequency increase and involve new flight points, Turkey secured 300+ additional flights per week and more than 25 new flight points. This right to additional flights has created the opportunity to provide a contribution of 600 millions dollars to the national economy.

ICAN2015, a five-day event involving panels, workshops, and sectoral meetings with participation of domestic and international corporations, contributed to the promotion of participating countries in the international arena.

In the Closing Ceremony, which included the evaluation speeches of ICAO Air Transportation Director Mr. Boubacar Djibo and Director General of Civil Aviation Bilal Ekşi regarding the negotiations, it was announced that the next ICAO Air Services Negotiation Event had been decided to be held in Dominic Republic in 2016.

Speech Texts