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EU Aviation Policy: The EESC speaks up

3 July 2015

Discussions on the best approach to EU aviation policy continue

Aeroplane​Forget your conflicting views and agree to look at the bigger picture of EU aviation policy. This is what members of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) told the European Commission and assorted EU aviation stakeholders at a public hearing on “Integrated EU Aviation Policy” organised on 2 July.
 
Held to gather views on how best to shape an integrated EU aviation policy, the hearing saw EESC members stress that EU aviation was struggling to remain globally competitive because of the lack of a truly European aviation policy. According to the EESC Rapporteur, Jacek Krawczyk, the EU needed an integrated aviation strategy at three levels: politically, economically and legally. Participants also called for the role of EASA to be strengthened and made the central agency for aviation safety management.
 
The strong message in favour of co-operation comes in the middle of a year that has already been marked by aviation stakeholders jostling for position in the effort to make their voices heard ahead of the EU Aviation Package due to be unveiled in December this year. As attention focuses on how best to support aviation competitiveness, division has appeared between stakeholders as disagreements emerge over issues including working conditions in civil aviation and competition from non-EU airlines.
 
The EESC hearing is the latest attempt to overcome these divisions and focus on the holistic needs of the aviation sector. The approach that the Commission will take is still being determined, and it can be expected that intense discussion and advocacy will continue all the way to the unveiling of the package in December.

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James Sibley, Senior EU Policy Analyst
James Sibley
Senior EU Policy Analyst

James Sibley leads on the Transport and Technology portfolios for the DeHavilland EU team. James has two years' experience working in Brussels, taking roles at the European Parliament and a public affairs consultancy. He is a graduate of the University of Exeter.