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European Commission

Press release

Brussels, 13 December 2012

Aviation: Kallas seeks pan-European cooperation on Single Sky

European Commission Vice-President Siim Kallas called today on the 44 Director-Generals representatives of the European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC) for full engagement on the implementation of the Single European Sky, and for a positive cooperation between ECAC and the EU.

Commissioner Kallas, responsible for the Transport portfolio, said "For industry, business and citizens to reap the benefits of the Single Sky, we first need to be empowered with the full support of Member States. I would very much like to see Member State civil aviation directors-general now take more responsibility and ownership of the project to help in that delivery. Next year is crucial for the Single Sky – and we need ECAC’s full engagement in this as well"

Single Sky

The Single European Sky is also a pan-European sky, for which the civil aviation directors-general can act as ambassadors, playing a coordinating role for the different approaches we see across Europe’s Member States. ECAC is uniquely placed to make a significant contribution – to assist, develop and enhance pan-European aviation. An accelerated implementation of the Single European Sky is crucial for the competitiveness, growth and sustainability of Europe's entire air transport system. The Single Sky is the logical partner to Europe's single transport market on the ground, too important to be allowed to fail. Member States haven't met the deadlines for the implementation of the Functional Airspace Blocks (FABs), which, along with the performance scheme, is the cornerstone of the entire project. Commission services are analysing the FABs situation in view of launching infringement proceedings against Member States if they are not fully compliant with EU law.

More cooperation and clear division of tasks

There is opportunity for ECAC and the EU to work together on a common agenda, if both sides respect each other's specific roles and specificities. While policy formulation and adoption of rules is the EU's core business, ECAC is a complementary body and plays an important role in preparatory work and on providing guidance to its members.

ECAC acts as 'international bridge'. It assists in coordinating the participation of 44 European States in international bodies dealing with aviation – ICAO, Eurocontrol, and of course, the EU institutions.

For more information please see:

SPEECH/12/951

IP/12/1301

MEMO/12/774

Contacts :

Helen Kearns (+32 2 298 76 38)

Dale Kidd (+32 2 295 74 61)


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