Latest update 16/06/2016: please see below for more details.
In December 2015, the European Commission published its Communication 'An Aviation Strategy for Europe', an important document identifying challenges and opportunities to improve the competitiveness of the EU Aviation sector in the years to come.
The Strategy includes:
- a proposal for a revision of the Aviation Safety Regulation to equip the EU's aviation safety system for future challenges;
- a package of requests to negotiate EU-level Comprehensive air transport agreements with third countries;
- an indicative action plan for the years to come.
Many of the solutions suggested by the Commission actually mirrored proposals promoted in ERA’s own strategy, released at the beginning of this year.
ERA informed members about the consultation process that preceded the publication of the Strategy and submitted a response to the online questionnaire, recommending members to provide their own comments and input as well.
ERA believes that the Strategy will not increase the long-term competitiveness of the industry compared to other methods of transport and non-European competitors. However, ERA is ready to work with the European Commission, Council and Parliament to ensure that the direction is modified to deliver on its original intent - a stronger, fitter and more efficient air transport system. Many of the actions proposed in the EC’s Strategy are short term, have no distinct timelines for achievement and do not provide a strong and clear action plan in order to strengthen Europe’s aviation industry.
Despite identifying most of the key subjects (infrastructure development, investment needs, importance of connectivity, tackling monopoly service providers, and improved safety) and talking in positive terms about aviation, the strategy is weak on definitive actions. For example, the issue of the looming airport capacity shortage at hubs is mentioned, but no tangible remedies to this problem are proposed.
Latest update 16/06/2016: ERA has now produced a new lobbying document entitled 'Building a Strong & Healthy Regional Air Transport System in Europe' with detailed comments on the Commission’s Strategy. The document, which can be downloaded on ERA’s website, is aimed at affording our objective to build a strong and healthy regional air transport system in Europe. We hope our contribution will assist both the EU and national Institutions as they move to the implementation phase of the Strategy.
ERA members are encouraged to use this new publication as a lobbying tool in their dialogue with their own national regulators and media, in an effort to help key decision makers build a strong and healthy regional air transport system in Europe.
For further information please contact Leonardo.Massetti@eraa.org