New global role for Australian unmanned aircraft industry association



The association of Australian Certified UAV Operators Inc. (ACUO), Australia’s peak industry association for commercial  unmanned aircraft, is to take up a seat on the International Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems Coordination Council, the  pre-eminent global policy coordination body for this important sunrise industry.

ACUO has also secured a corporate seat on the Board of UVS International, the Paris-headquartered global unmanned  systems industry association.

ACUO President, Mr Joe Urli, says the attainment of these two seats “provides global recognition for Australia’s fledgling  commercial unmanned aircraft industry.  “It gives direct opportunity for development of new commercial and industrial linkages in the sector as it rapidly develops across the globe.

“It gives Australian industry a voice at the global table as key rules, regulations and strategic industrial relationships are established in this sector.

“The global unmanned aircraft industry is going to be vast, and the opportunities for Australia are immense. ACUO is proud to be carrying the flag.”

The International Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems Council emerged in 2008 as a forum for cross-border policy and  information exchange between national unmanned aircraft industry associations, and national and international  regulators.

Priority Council activities include support for a coherent global air traffic access regime for unmanned aircraft, particularly  the smaller types which dominate the emergent commercial marketplace, and high level research into key issues such as insurance and safety.

Member nations on the council include Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, and the  United Kingdom, each represented by their national unmanned aircraft industry association. Australia is the first southern  hemisphere nation to join. Negotiations are currently underway with national industry associations in South America, Asia and the Middle East, as the Council expands to fully reflect international industry growth patterns.

UVS International, a global association, has instigated the International Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems Coordination Council and facilitates its engagement with key bodies including the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), the European Commission and its agencies, Eurocontrol, SESAR Joint Undertaking, the European Parliament, and Joint Authorities for Rulemaking on Unmanned Systems (JARUS).

UVS International President Mr Peter van Blyenburgh says “Australia has been an important reference nation during the long emergence of the global unmanned aircraft industry, both in terms of manufacturers and operators. Likewise former CASA specialist Mal Walker’s pioneering national and international work on unmanned aircraft systems regulation should not be forgotten.

“The establishment of formal linkages with ACUO is a significant step in our ongoing effort to federate the international unmanned aircraft system operator’s community and help harmonise international arrangements for safe airspace access.

“We see significant opportunities emerging from this relationship in relatively short order.”

UVS International is a non-profit association registered in The Netherlands and operating out of offices in Paris, France. It  was established in 1995 and is dedicated to the promotion of remotely piloted aircraft systems; it federates more than 800 manufacturers, operators, government entities, regulatory authorities, researchers and academia in 40 countries.

UVS International opened its Australian liaison office in Brisbane in June 2013, with this headed by the respected  international unmanned aircraft industry analyst Peter La Franchi.

ACUO was established as a legal entity in March 2010 and currently represents one third of all entities holding Australian  Civil Aviation Safety Authority unmanned aircraft operator certificates. It is chartered to promote the growth and the  expansion of the commercial unmanned aircraft industry in Australia and to ensure the safe and orderly growth of the  sector.

For further information:

Joe Urli
ACUO, Australia.
Tel: 61-408 382 165
Email: [email protected]
Web site: