Today, airline executives representing the cargo activity of the members of the Association of European Airlines (AEA) met with key MEPs, Commission Directors and Transport Attachés in the European Parliament to discuss the elements needed to ensure a more competitive European air cargo industry. They urged European regulators and policy makers to develop a balanced approach towards infrastructure needs, to ensure a competitive level playing field, to harmonize smart customs and security regulations based on international standards and to create a paperless environment.
The event also provided airline CEOs with a unique opportunity to encourage European regulators and policy makers to recognise the importance of the European air cargo industry and to reflect this in their transport strategies for the years to come.
The carriage of cargo by air is an essential pillar of international trade and is a key element in today’s speed-driven economy. Europe plays a key role in the worldwide air cargo supply chain. While the contribution of the air cargo sector to the European economy is generally understood, often the reality it faces is not. AEA’s member airlines are facing regulatory burdens, lack the necessary airport infrastructure and are confronted with administrative inefficiencies which have an immediate impact on Europe’s competitiveness at global level. All these issues were highlighted today in a constructive meeting with MEPs and representatives of the European Commission.
“European regulators often seem to forget about the importance of the air freight industry, and focus only on the passenger side of our business”, said Mr. Athar Husain Khan, AEA’s CEO. “The Aviation Package discussion provides a unique opportunity to address the many challenges faced by the cargo divisions of European airlines in this fast changing and globalizing cargo market environment.”