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Brussels, 5 April 2006

Noise-related operating restrictions at EU airports: European Commission sends a reasoned opinion to Cyprus

The European Commission sent a reasoned opinion – the last step before a formal complaint to the Court of Justice is lodged – to Cyprus for having failed to comply with its obligations in transposing Community law concerning the standards for subsonic jet aeroplanes.

Member States had to ensure that from 1 April 2002[1] subsonic jet aeroplanes operating from airports situated in their territory comply with the standards in the field of noise certification specified in the Convention on International Aviation. In the case of Cyprus the total phase out of noisy airplanes – as specified in Chapter 2 of the Convention - should have been implemented by the date of the country’s accession to the EU, the 1st of May 2004.

In their reply to the letter of formal notice from the Commission Cypriot authorities confirmed that the withdrawal of Chapter 2 aeroplanes used for charter flights had not been implemented yet and that the withdrawal was to take place gradually. However, the State nonetheless failed to comply with its obligations under the Directive.

The Republic of Cyprus now has two months at its disposal to phase out all Chapter 2 aeroplanes from its airports. Should the country fail to undertake these measures the Commission may bring the case before the European Court of Justice.

[1] Directive 2002/30/EC

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