Brussels, Belgium – 21 March 2014 – Representatives from the European Business Aviation Association (EBAA), the International Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (IAOPA), members of industry and Members of the European Parliament have convened for breakfast to discuss what progress has been made since the European Parliament published a Resolution on an Agenda for a Sustainable Future of General and Business Aviation in February 2009. Participants generally agreed that while the resolution recognizes the importance of the sector for European economic growth and regional connectivity, two areas where greater support was needed – fair access to airports and a need for tailored rulemaking - have witnessed few gains since publication.
“It is important that we foster close relationships with this sector to be continually updated on its advances and opportunities to improve air transport for the benefit of all users,” stated MEP Knut Fleckenstein, who co-hosted the breakfast together with EBAA and IAOPA. “That said, we believe we can – and should – do better.”
In terms of fair access for business and general aviation operations, hurdles have appeared in recent legislation concerning slot allocations and state aid to regional airports, and the relentless squeezing out of business and general aircraft from major airport hubs persists. As for the deficit of rules tailored for business and general aviation operations – whose operations significantly differ from those of the airlines - one only need to look at the sector’s treatment in the EU Emissions Trading Scheme, Flight Time Limitations and Runway Performance rulemaking.
“There is a need for a joint approach between the Parliament, the Commission and its agencies, where the Parliament takes a leading role in influencing policies that result in more growth in our sector. Europe should aspire to be the world leader in this segment of civil aviation,” explained Martin Robinson, Senior Vice President of IAOPA.
“Fulfilling the proposals of the Resolution is of vital importance; not only to business and general aviation, but to Europe as a whole,” added Fabio Gamba, CEO of EBAA. “We are committed to ensuring that our unique requirements, activities and numerous benefits to business passengers and local economies remain visible to European legislators. And we look forward to continuing this dialogue to ensure that the 2009 Resolution does not turn out to be an exercise made in vain.”
The European Business Aviation Association (EBAA) was founded in 1977 to defend the interests of business aviation. Today, more than 800 business aviation companies (direct members or members of associate organisations) rely on the EBAA to protect their business interests. It is the only voice to represent business aviation among the European institutions. For more information, visit www.ebaa.org.
The International Council of Aircraft Owner and Pilot Associations represent the interests of more than 470,000 pilots and aircraft owners in 71 countries. Formed in 1962, IAOPA is dedicated to promoting the peaceful uses of general aviation and aerial work worldwide. For more information, visit http://www.iaopa.org.