AER Working Group on Regional Airports: “The future of our Regions is closely interlinked with that of our airports”
At the verge of the publication of the revision of the Community guidelines on the financing of airports and start-up state aid to airlines, the AER, together with over 20 member regions and partner organizations Airports Council International and Airport Regions Conference, met with representatives from DG Competition and DG Move, in order to urge the EC to further consider the impact the guidelines will have on the survival of certain regional airports, which play a major catalyst role in the economic development of regions.
The revised guidelines will propose stricter rules for public financing of regional airports, the removal of subsidies for airports with less than 200,000 passengers per year, and the drastic reduction of aid for airports with between 200,000 and 1 million passengers per year. These measures, will lead to the closure of dozens of airports and infringe the ability of Regions to organise their transport services and therefore define coherent territorial development strategies, as well as damage the connectivity and attractiveness of certain regions with regards to local and international businesses.
Driven by its mandate to defend the regional interest of its regions and strengthen their economic growth, the AER will launch a campaign aiming to include the regional voice into the EC guidelines revision and secure the future of airports and regions across the European continent.