The civil aviation authority of a country is the national body governing civil aviation. In many countries, it is simply known as the Civil Aviation Authority, but this is not universally the case. For example, the national civil aviation authority of the United States is the Federal Aviation Administration and that of Australia is known as the Civil Aviation Safety Authority. International coordination of these bodies is undertaken by the UN organisation ICAO.
These authorities regulate civil aviation activities in their countries. Amongst their diverse responsibilities are licencing pilots, registering aircraft, and certifying aircraft and engine designs as safe for use. They ensure that aircraft and aviation facilities are maintained to a standard sufficient for safe operation.
In some cases there is a division between the CAA (the regulatory agency) and the ANSP (the Air Navigation Service Provider). An example of a regional regulator is European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). Cooperation among ANSPs is made via Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation (CANSO).
Published in July 2009.
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