At the beginning of December Violeta Bulc, European Commissioner for Mobility and Transport, presented a New Aviation Strategy for Europe. The communication from the Commission states three focus areas.
The first part of the strategy covers the aim, on guaranteed equal conditions, to improve market access with third countries in combination with investment opportunities. The second part lays out the ambition to actively promote measures to overcome capacity gaps in the air and on the ground in combination with increasing efficiency and connectivity. The third part identifies the possibilities of shifting to a risk and perfomance approche to maintaining high EU safety and security standards
One, out of many other, driving forces that has been forwaded from the Aviation Industry to the Commission is the debate concerning state aid witch leeds to unfair competition, primarily from the Gulf carriers, such as Emirates, Etihad Airways and Qatar Airways. The same pattern can also be found in emerging aviation markets such as China, Brazil and Turkey. The result of this unfair competition is that the Airliners inside the EU are losing money and market shares.
The Commission’s Aviation Strategy mediates an ambition to find solutions for the coming years that supports the development and expansion of the overall European Aviation industries. The strategy also covers significant measurements to secure the passengers safety in respect to terrorism as well as to the working conditions among staff members at airports and among flight operators.
Despite the outcome of the European Strategy it is unavoidable that Regional Airports will be affected by the onward development in the aviation sector. Initially there will be increasing costs for the adoption of the future safety and security measurements. The new competition pattern that originates from emerging markets like China will affect European regions in a negative direction, in particular concerning connectivity. On the regional level, measurements must be taken to outbalance or at least, to ease the consequences due to the shift in the markets and competition structures to come.
The working group on transport and regional airports will continue representing the regional interests in this issue. To know more about this working group, do not hesitate to contact Johanna Pacevicius, policy and knowledge transfer coordinator.
Article by Roger Estefors.
Roger comes from Vasterbotten (SE) and is a member of the Working Group on Transport and Regional Airports, within the AER Committee for Economy and Regional Development