The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport (MOLIT) signed a MOU with the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) at the Grand Hyatt Incheon. EASA is an organization responsible for aviation safety in Europe that supports the implementation of the aviation safety legal system and certifies the safety of aviation products. Along with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, it is leading aviation safety policies around the world.
Patrick Ky, head of the European Air Safety Administration; Kwon Yong-bok, deputy of Civil Aviation at MOLIT; and Kim Sang-do, director of Aviation Safety Policy at the MOLIT, attended the signing ceremony. MOUs included an education on overall aviation safety, an exchange of training activities, co-hosting workshops and seminars, an exchange of personnel in technical fields, sharing aviation safety information and holding cooperative meetings.
Korea and EASA have decided to sign an additional business agreement to implement mutual technical certification for aircraft and components manufactured in Europe. Through this, the company has prepared a bridgehead to export Korean-made aircraft to Europe.
Korea signed an Aviation Safety Agreement (BASA) with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration in 2008. And in 2014, MOLIT expanded the scope of mutual recognition to smaller aircraft. With the signing of the BASA, Korean companies have opened a way for them to export air products to the U.S. and Boeing. MOLIT believes that the mutual recognition of aircraft parts at a similar level to that of BASA will extend to Europe in the future.
MOLIT has maintained a partnership with the U.S. FAA, but has only had intermittent cooperation with EASA in Europe. The MOU was launched when EASA proposed MOLIT to share safety information on civil aircraft when it raised safety issues with North Korea's missile launches in 2017. MOLIT has again proposed to expand the scope of cooperation to areas such as education, human resources and exchange of technologies, rather than sharing safety information. After a year of negotiations, Korea and EASA signed an MOU.
EASA is also planning to maintain high levels of cooperation with South Korea. "EASA currently has business agreements with more than 90 countries, most of which are aimed at establishing communication channels, and Korea is looking to sign an unusually deeper level of cooperation," said Ky, "Korea is an advanced country in aviation safety along with Singapore and the UAE, so we plan to move the relationship further," he said.
Yong-bok, said: “We expect exports to be promoted and technology exchanges will be expanded, as both sides will accept the technology certification system for aviation products manufactured in Korea and Europe as much as possible. Since we signed a business agreement with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), it has become easier to export aircraft parts to U.S. aircraft manufacturers such as Boeing, and the MOU will open the way for them to export small aircraft to Europe or to deliver aircraft parts to Airbus.”