Hong Kong and Bangkok take lead in Asia-Pacific region in completing assessment on Common Regional Virtual Private Network (with photos)

     The Civil Aviation Department (CAD) and Thailand's air navigation service provider (ANSP), namely Aeronautical Radio of Thailand Ltd, today (December 14) held an operational readiness ceremony following their recent success in connecting the two places through the Common Regional Virtual Private Network (CRV). The ceremony, which took place at the CAD Headquarters, was witnessed by a representative of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) regional office.

     As two of the region's major aviation network hubs, Hong Kong and Bangkok assisted the ICAO in completing a comprehensive technical and operational assessment of the CRV and achieved satisfactory results, thus becoming the first pair of ANSPs in the Asia-Pacific region to exchange aeronautical information via the CRV. The successful outcome indicates that the CRV is ready to provide services to all ANSPs in the Asia-Pacific region, which will significantly enhance the transmission speed of aeronautical information, support the scalability of information and enhance related services.

     In accordance with operational needs, the ANSPs in the Asia-Pacific region have been subscribing to the services of their respective network service providers for the provision of tailor-made fixed telecommunication networks for exchange of high volume of aeronautical information in various formats. Without centralised network management, it is not practical to standardise the on-going network upgrades to meet future operational needs as it involves different network service providers in different areas. Likewise, standardised cyber security measures could not be developed effectively either. In view of the surging volume of aeronautical information driven by increasing air traffic and a need to enhance cyber security, the ICAO advocated an initiative in 2013 for the ANSPs of the Asia-Pacific region to adopt a single dedicated high-speed aeronautical information network supplied by a sole network service provider.

     The CAD has taken a pioneering role in implementing the ICAO initiative. Over the past few years, the CAD and other ANSPs have been actively exploring and drawing up detailed arrangements for the CRV implementation. Once the contract for the sole network service provider for the Asia-Pacific region was awarded by the ICAO through an open tender, the CAD and the authority concerned in Thailand took the lead in helping the ICAO in taking forward this initiative. After three months of study, equipment installation, thorough testing and trials to verify its technical feasibility, the CRV connection passed all the tests and has been confirmed as effectively ready to provide dedicated aviation network services in the Asia-Pacific region.

     Under the CRV, ANSPs in the Asia-Pacific region will have their dedicated links connected to the CRV for the exchange of aeronautical information. The CRV will also adopt an independent Internet Protocol address scheme to minimise the risk of cyber attacks. Other benefits include supporting a number of the ICAO's aviation system block upgrade modules, enhancing the quality of voice communication data and strengthening the connectivity between the Asia-Pacific and other regions in aviation information exchange.

Ends/Thursday, December 14, 2017
Issued at HKT 15:00