Burundi, a small landlocked country in East Africa, has recently introduced new regulations governing the use of drones. The new laws, which were passed in 2020, aim to regulate the use of drones and ensure that they are used safely and responsibly.
The regulations require all drone operators to obtain a permit from the Burundian Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) before they can fly their drones. The permit application process involves submitting an application form, along with a copy of the operator’s ID card or passport, and a copy of the drone’s registration certificate.
The CAA will then review the application and issue a permit if the operator meets the necessary requirements. These requirements include passing a theoretical and practical exam on drone operation, demonstrating that the drone is in good working condition, and providing proof of liability insurance.
Once a permit has been issued, the operator must comply with a number of rules and regulations. These include flying the drone only during daylight hours, keeping the drone within visual line of sight at all times, and not flying the drone over people or property without the owner’s permission.
The regulations also prohibit the use of drones for commercial purposes without obtaining a separate permit from the Ministry of Commerce, Industry, and Tourism. This permit requires the operator to provide a detailed business plan, including information on the type of services to be provided, the target market, and the expected revenue.
Failure to comply with the regulations can result in fines or even imprisonment. The penalties for violating the regulations range from a fine of up to 10 million Burundian francs (approximately $5,000) to imprisonment for up to six months.
The new regulations have been welcomed by many in Burundi, who see them as a necessary step to ensure the safe and responsible use of drones. However, some have criticized the regulations as being too restrictive and hindering the development of the drone industry in the country.
Despite these criticisms, the Burundian government has defended the regulations, stating that they are necessary to protect public safety and ensure that drones are not used for illegal activities such as espionage or smuggling.
Overall, the new drone regulations in Burundi represent a significant step forward in regulating the use of drones in the country. While some may view them as overly restrictive, they are an important tool for ensuring that drones are used safely and responsibly, and that they do not pose a threat to public safety or security. As the drone industry continues to grow and evolve, it is likely that we will see similar regulations introduced in other countries around the world.