Govt mulls new law to regulate use of drones

A working committee has recommended promulgation of a law to regulate the use of small drones in the Sultanate. In its report to the State Council, the committee said currently there was no legislation governing the use of such aircraft, while seeking controls and regulations for operating them and providing a safe environment for civilian passenger aircraft.
A release issued by the State Council, citing the report, said there is an absence of a government/private agency to accommodate amateur interest and a shortage of specific areas for practising it as a hobby.
Dr Said bin Sultan bin Hamood al Busaidy, head of the working group, told the State Council that the report was aimed at creating a comprehensive legal mechanism to regulate the import, trade, circulation and use of small drones.
The report also suggested controls to ensure the use of drones confirms to social, economic and technical provisions of public safety rules and requirements of airspace in the Sultanate.
“It is crucial that users do not violate confidentiality of protected sites, maintain privacy of individuals as well as assure the usage of these planes in the legitimate areas of ambulance services, rescue, imaging and other areas remain unhindered,” said the report.
The various types of remotely controlled aircraft, their uses and risks of such use were reviewed.
Following discussions, a proposal was put forward to find a legal way that would allow the import, manufacture and use of drones.
The head of the team also spoke of the need to establish controls to ensure that they are used in a manner which takes into account social, economic and technical aspects which are important in providing public safety and requirements.
It will also ensure that the users will not violate the sanctity of protected sites, and maintain the privacy of individuals, and does not hinder the security.