The United Kingdom is a signator to the ICAO convention and as such, its Overseas Territories are also obligated to honor the above ICAO commitment. Civil Aviation in the United Kingdom Overseas Territories (OT) is governed by legislation (principally the Air Navigation (Overseas Territories) Order (AN(OT)O) and International Conventions and Standards (principally those published by the International Civil Aviation Organization) with which the United Kingdom, as a State, has agreed to comply.
The Civil Aviation Overseas Territories Act 1949 (as extended to the Overseas Territories) provides the framework for Governors’ regulatory powers. The Act also enables the Air Navigation (Overseas Territories) Order to be made to permit the Governor to exercise his/her regulatory obligations, either directly or through a designated person or organization. Within the AN (OT) O each particular subject is dealt with by way of the appropriate Articles and Regulations.
Air Safety Support International (ASSI) has been established by the United Kingdom’s Department for Transport to provide guidance or assistance as required to the Overseas Territories for this task. This includes publication of the OTARs on behalf of Governors of the Overseas Territories (OTs) in support of the Governor’s powers contained in the Air Navigation (Overseas Territories) Order – the AN(OT)O.
OTARs provide details on means of compliance with the AN(OT)O which are acceptable to Governors, ASSI and the United Kingdom Government. They describe the way in which aircraft operators, aviation personnel and providers of services can gain approvals and licences, and the process through which these are maintained to ensure adequate levels of safety and internationally-agreed standards are met. The OTARs are not intended to supersede or conflict with statutory requirements, and so the obligation to comply with statutory requirements remains. In addition, the appropriate authority may accept an alternative means of compliance, provided that the applicant can show that the level of safety will not be reduced below that intended by the requirement.
OTARs, to become legal instruments, must be “gazetted” (formally notified) in the particular Territory. They are live requirements and will change over time in response to a variety of factors.