May 16, 2021

Airlines ask to collaborate with Defensa in the flexible use of airspace

Airlines ask to collaborate with Defensa in the flexible use of airspace



The Airline Association (ALA) asks the new government to work together with the Ministry of Defense to see how the coordination between civilian and military traffic and, above all, the flexible use of airspace can benefit both parties.

Its president, Javier Gándara, has qualified that national defense is "a fundamental good" and has to be a priority, but "to see how it can be accounted for with another fundamental asset such as the connectivity of travelers".

Therefore, the employers, representing seventy-five regular airlines operating in Spain, both national and international, considers it key that the sector can collaborate with Defense on this issue and can achieve the objectives of both parties.

The association asks the Executive to help improve collaboration between the different actors involved in the air transport sector, including the ministries involved.

In his opinion, the Government should lead the whole process and "not depend only on goodwill, there is," airport operator Aena, the manager of air navigation Enaire or the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGAC), but also came from the ministries.

For Gándara, an important thing is that the Government understands "the fundamental role that aviation has, not only in tourism, but in the Spanish economy".

In his opinion, it should be tried that the companies get involved more and more, through the participation of their associations in organisms as, for example, the airport coordination committees, in the decision making of different things that may affect the future of the sector.

In addition to these more structural issues, at the beginning of the summer season and the congestion of the European skies that is generated in that period, ALA believes it is necessary that the different organizations involved in the sector assume their responsibility in the delays or cancellations .

In addition, it asks that compensation costs be shared between them, whether they are airport or air navigation managers, airlines or third parties that alter standard operations.

In this context, the general director of Eurocontrol, Eamonn Brennan, has acknowledged that this summer "will be misery" for passengers and worse in terms of delays than the summer of 2018, which recorded delays in 33% of the flights and an average delay of 49 flight minutes.

The airlines have assumed the environment of congestion as the new normal and continue to put many means to avoid or mitigate the impact of alterations on passengers.

However, delays and cancellations, even for reasons beyond the control of the companies, affect them economically, since the European regulation EC 261/2004 obliges them to take charge of the affected passengers (maintenance, accommodation, reimbursement or search for alternative transport). ) also in case of extraordinary circumstances beyond your control.

For this reason, airlines believe that it is fair and reasonable to find formulas for a possible impact, of at least a part of these costs, on those that have directly caused the delay or cancellation, said Gándara, who trusts that the regulation on compensation rights, whose review was stopped, resume and activate after the European elections.

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