About this book
Civil Aviation has become a public utility service. SALVATORE TOMASINO I} Although civil aviation has enjoyed unflagging public interest since its birth in 1919, and even before that date, the factors governing the development of civil aviation are nevertheless not widely known. This applies not so much to technical development as to the political and economic considerations which ultimately determine the pattern of the worldwide network of air routes. Whereas, prior to World War II, civil aviation was regarded mainly as an instrument for political penetration, with perhaps the Netherlands and its K.L.M.2) as a striking exception, since 1945 civil aviation has come to be judged more on its own merits, though it has remained primarily a government matter. The political, strategic, economic, financial and social aspeCts of civil aviation together constitute a field which, particularly since World War II, has come to form the subject-matter of a more or less independent branch of foreign policy, designated 'by the term "international civil aviation policy". In spite of the dominating factors of national prestige and later of economic nationalism, States have nevertheless directly and indirectly taken upon themselves a number of obligations in the international field, thereby giving civil aviation an international legal basis.