Europe’s biggest ANSPs call on the European Commission to introduce flexible support mechanisms during the crisis

- Europe.

There was, on average, a 90% downturn in traffic over Europe due to the COVID-19 epidemic, unprecedentedly affecting the whole aviation industry, and effectively – the revenues of air navigations services providers. Even though deprived of their income and despite the crisis, agencies have not suspended works on critical infrastructure development, also those under EU programmes. They want to be ready to handle the traffic once it is restored, in order to support the European economy to the highest possible extent. However, in a joint statement, agencies indicate that this will not be possible without additional support from the European Commission.

The CEOs of A6 Alliance called upon Director Henrik Hololei of the Directorate General for Mobility and Transport (DG MOVE), and Director Dirk Beckers of the Innovation and Network Executive Agency (INEA), for adjustment of requirements of EU programmes according to the current situation in the airspace caused by COVID-19.

The agencies insist on more flexible timeframes for the implementation of infrastructure projects under the EU programs and with support of EU funding, which will give time to adapt to the current aviation market landscape. A6 is asking for postponement of the dates of both the INEA funded implementation projects and of the EU regulation PCP/CP1.

The agencies also called for instruments ensuring financial liquidity, e.g. increasing the level of upfront payments for co-financed projects, optimizing payments for completed projects, securing and increasing the level of project co-financing in the next financing period of the Connecting Europe Facility (2021-2027), ensuring adequate financial support for industrialization phase of the SESAR Technology Program in order to effectively implement mature innovative solutions.

- As members of A6 Alliance, we strongly agree that we should focus on joint approaches using the SDM forum, so that we can keep investing in a coordinated manner to deliver a modern ATM system that supports the European air transport value chain and delivers benefits to Europe’s citizens and economy, particularly as we seek to recover from this most challenging of times. – said Janusz Janiszewski, chairman of the A6 Alliance Steering Board and president of Polish Air Navigation Services Agency.

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