An organization composed of representatives from European leisure airlines has called for strict limits on European Union (EU) aviation infrastructure charges and regulations on organizations that have a grip on monopoly positions in the industry.
Airlines International Representation in Europe (AIRE) Director-General Sylviane Lust has expressed to EU Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc during a meeting that improvements to the aviation policies must be implemented urgently.
AIRE, which represents 16 carriers currently involved in the leisure and charter sectors, is asking for crucial progress towards a more cost-efficient infrastructure in the EU, and better harmonization and standardization of EU laws.
“We must now see concrete steps to address the unjustifiable cost of the EU infrastructure. Airports have shown through a number of criteria that they have significant market power and hence they must be subject to economic regulation at EU level.
“Other monopoly providers of air navigation services keep increasing their profits while not delivering the required capacity. Airlines and their passengers need a strong EU regulator to prevent these monopolies from abusing their position. A thriving airline sector will result in a wider choice for passengers, an objective that the EU liberalization process should continue to pursue,” Lust said.
AIRE’s recently appointed President Rafal Milczarski, who is CEO of LOT Polish Airlines, also remarked that ANSPs’ fees should be capped and that there should be a yearly 10% reduction in the expenses of the European Network Manager, which is part of Eurocontrol.
“The aviation industry in Europe faces many challengers such as open sky development, airspace availability as well as regulations regarding state support for the airlines,” Milczarski said.
AIRE members also asserted the need for airlines to operate in a standardized and harmonized atmosphere and called upon the European Commission, to initiate the drive to push member states towards more harmonized application of rules in key areas such as safety, security and border control.