The ICAO flag


ICAO Flag copy 5cm


UN Flag copy 5cm

ICAO and UN flags

The flag of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) is the official emblem of the Organization. It is interesting to recall that former staff member Georgette Vandal initially received the approval to sell small flags bearing the ICAO crest at the Staff Association Boutique, before proposing the establishment of an ICAO flag to the then Secretary General, Mr. Philippe Rochat, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of ICAO.


In the framework of the 50th anniversary celebrations, the ICAO Council, at its 14th Meeting of its 138th Session on 19 March 1993, adopted an official flag, which is similar in size, colour and general layout as the United Nations flag. The ICAO flag reproduces the official emblem of ICAO without the acronyms and bears the blue and white colours of the United Nations, as well as its depiction of the landmasses of the earth, enveloped by two olive branches symbolizing peace. To these symbols of the United Nations, ICAO had added the wings, which have come to symbolize how international civil aviation helps to bring the peoples of the world together in the pursuit of peace. The blue background is meant to symbolize a peaceful environment and is said to be the opposite of the traditional red color, which often represents war and the lives lost during war. The United Nations has never officially defined the exact shade of blue that should be used in the flag, although it is typically light blue in color.


The ICAO flag was first displayed at the 30th Session (Extraordinary) of the Assembly (Montreal, 25 and 26 May 1993) where delegations were each presented with one flag. At the Council’s request, Mr. J. Pérez y Bouraz, Representative of Mexico on the Council and Dean of the Council, presented during the 30th Session of the Assembly the first flag to the President of the Council, Dr. Assad Kotaite. The ICAO flag was flown official for the first time on 7 December 1994 at ICAO Headquarters, Montreal.


Note that the flag of the United Nations was adopted by the General Assembly on 20 October 1947. Two countries, i.e. Fiji and Vanuatu, issued philatelic material bearing the ICAO flag.


Early Flag copy  Early Flag - Enlarged center copy

ICAO Unofficial early flag (1947)

The design shows the eastern and western hemi­spheres between a pair of wings.


ICAO Flag - President and Secretary General Enveiling copy

May 1993 – ICAO President Assad Kotaite and Secretary General Philippe Rochat unveiling the new ICAO flag


ICAO Flag - Presentation to A Kotaite copy

Shown with the first ICAO flag to be produced in May 1993 are (from left to right): Mr. Gilles Duguay (Canada), Chairman of the ICAO 50th Anniversary Planning Group; Dr. Assad Kotaite, President of the Council; Mr. J. Pérez y Bouras (Mexico), the Dean of the ICAO Council; and Dr. Philippe Rochat, Secretary General of ICAO.


Fiji - Presentation folder - Front copy


Fiji - Presentation folder - Middle left copy


Fiji - Presentation folder - Middle right copy


Fiji - Presentation folder - Front of the card copy      Fiji - Presentation folder - Back of the card copy


Fiji - Presentation folder - Back copy

Fiji - 7 December 1994 - 50th Anniversary of ICAO.

A presentation folder was issued for the Fiji $10 ICAO/CAAF 50th anniversary card, with four pages. It is to be noted that only 500 of those folders with the phone card were issued.

Shows ICAO and Fiji flags. Emblem of the Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji (CAAF).


Vanuatu copy

Vanuatu - 7 December 1994 - 50th Anniversary of ICAO.

First day cover showing flags of Vanuatu and ICAO.

The yellow tusk surrounding the black silhouette of an aircraft flying out of a runway of national colours is a refreshingly simple representation of the design requirements.


Session No37 copy


Session No37 - Personnalized stamp copy

Commemorative cover released for the 37th Session of the Assembly held in 2010. The stamp is unique and original, since this is the first time in history that the emblem of the Organization, as represented on its flag, is depicted on a postage stamp. This personalized stamp was printed by the Canadian Bank Note Company, Limited, by order of Canada Post.

Some other particularities of this cover need to be highlighted:

  1. The text is printed in green, referring to one of the main topics of discussion during this Session of the Assembly, i.e. the environment. On the other hand, the central part of figure 37 is designed from a selection of drawings by children submitted during the competition on the theme of Aviation in a Green Environment, held at ICAO in 2009 for the World Environment Day (WED). The theme of that year’s WED celebration was: Many Species. One Planet. One Future..
  2. The bottom frame on the right-side commemorates the 100th anniversary of the first flight over Montreal by Count Jacques de Lesseps on 2 July 1910 with his Bleriot XI named "Le Scarabée", during the first-ever air show held in Canada. In honour of the 100th anniversary of the first airplane flight over Montréal, an exact replica of "Le Scarabée" was on display in the hall of honour at the City Hall, Montréal from 24 June to 31 July 2010.