From the SDGs: Relevant targets

16.3) Promote the rule of law at the national and international levels and ensure equal access to justice for all

16.5) Substantially reduce corruption and bribery in all their forms

16.6) Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels

16.A) Strengthen relevant national institutions, including through international cooperation, for building capacity at all levels, in particular in developing countries, to prevent violence and combat terrorism and crime

From the SDGs: Aviation-relevant indicators

16.2.2) Number of victims of human trafficking per 100,000 population, by sex, age and form of exploitation [related to efforts by the aviation industry to work on education for employees to help end human trafficking]

Did you know?

Air transport has a specialised United Nations agency coordinating global standards and laws to ensure a safe, secure and sustainable sector: the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)

Relevance to aviation

At its most fundamental level, air transport brings people together. This fosters understanding and helps bridge divides and ultimately helps build peace. It is perhaps best elaborated in the preamble to the Chicago Convention, the ‘founding document’ of international civil aviation:

"Whereas the future development of international civil aviation can greatly help to create and preserve friendship and understanding among the nations and peoples of the world, yet its abuse can become a threat to the general security; and

Whereas it is desirable to avoid friction and to promote that co-operation between nations and peoples upon which the peace of the world depends;

Therefore, the undersigned governments having agreed on certain principles and arrangements in order that international civil aviation may be developed in a safe and orderly manner and that international air transport services may be established on the basis of equality of opportunity and operated soundly and economically;

Have accordingly concluded this Convention to that end."

Aviation also has a very visible responsibility for the security of its operation and the industry works closely in partnership with governments and multilateral bodies to ensure that system is robust. In addition, many aviation partners are working to reduce the use of air transport as a conduit for illegal activities such as wildlife and human trafficking.

Examples of action

  • Over 40 aviation-related companies are members of the UN Global Compact and nearly 50 airlines and airports produce CSR reports that are aligned to the Global Reporting Initiative.
  • FedEx established a separate Corporate Identity and Compliance department in 2015 to reinforce its commitment to ethical business practices and elimination of corruption and bribery.
  • The ICAO Secretariat provides legal advice and assistance to ICAO member States when legal disputes over aviation activity arise.
  • American Airlines’ 120,000 staff members are being trained to identify cases of potential child sex trafficking.

How governments can assist

  • Work with the industry on a range of issues, particularly safety and security, to ensure the peaceful contribution of air transport to global connectivity, trade and tourism.
  • Engage with the transport sector to help reduce the incidence of aviation being used unwittingly as a conduit for illegal activities through capacity building for frontline staff.