Bosnia Must Wait Until 2012 for Airspace Control

Bosnia does not expect to gain full control of its airspace before the end of 2012, until which time it will continue to lose a large chunk of revenues from flights over its territory, an official told Balkan Insight.

At the moment Bosnia is testing an air traffic management system - including navigational and communications equipment - it developed with loans worth €16.8 million provided by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the spokesman for the countrys civil aviation directorate, Aleksandar Lalovic, said.

Bosnian authorities provided a further €3.7 million for training of air traffic controllers.

After the testing phase is completed at the end of this year, Bosnias civil aviation authorities are expected to begin taking over full control of the countrys airspace through a gradual process which is expected to be completed at the end of 2012, he added.

Until 2007, Bosnian airspace was controlled by international peacekeeping forces that deployed in the country at the end of its 1992-95 war.

However, three years since full command and control were transferred back to Bosnia, the lack of fully functioning equipment and trained staff prevents its civil aviation authorities from controlling the skies over 8,000 meters.

Instead, Bosnia pays the flight control agencies of neighboring Croatia and Serbia for the service.

As the result, Croatia and Serbia collect 52 per cent of the revenues commercial airlines pay to fly over Bosnia, or around 12 million euros annually.
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Balkan Insight
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www.balkaninsight.com
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