During the Hungarian chairmanship of the FAB CE CEO Committee (CEOC) between June 2014 and June 2015 six members of FAB CE established an international company to support the implementation of agreed common goals of the Central European Functional Airspace Block Programme, and further enhance InterFAB cooperations. The long-planned reform of the FAB CE Programme is soon to be launched and the RP 2 performance plan for the 2015-2019 period, a key factor in the FAB CE operation, was successfully finalised.
One of the major milestones in the past twelve months in respect of FAB CE operation was the foundation of the joint venture company, FAB CE Aviation Services Ltd., which serves the efficient implementation of regional cooperation. Following several years of preparation, the foundation document was signed by representatives of the FAB CE countries that are members of the European Union in October 2014. The purpose of the company established for joint procurement is to support the progress of the Central European Functional Airspace Block Programme, and thus the implementation of the European Union’s Single European Sky (SES II) programme. Currently, the main goal of the cooperation is a joint project management with further development options like reducing undue overlaps or the amount of redundant equipment in regional operations, what can lead to significant savings in a larger area of operation.
During the Hungarian chairmanship the review and restructure of FAB CE were also launched in the autumn of 2014, on the initiative of the Austrian and Hungarian ANSPs. From now on the air navigation service providers will focus on top-down, regulatory defined mandatory duties and commonly agreed bottom-up projects enabling members also to fasten implementations by allowing bi- or multilateral developments within FAB CE that enable a more efficient and swifter fulfilment of the requirements set by the European Commission.
The InterFAB agreement signed by the member states of FAB CE and BLUE MED FAB (Cyprus, Greece, Italy and Malta) during the Hungarian chairmanship also supported the air navigation developments included in the SES II programme. The cooperation set the objectives to implement safer, more cost-efficient, more performance-oriented and more sustainable air navigation, and to establish several similar collaborations in the future. The first InterFab coordination workshop held in Amsterdam in November 2014 further encouraged the expansion of InterFab agreements. On the workshop, the representatives of nine European functional airspace blocks shared their experiences on implementation of FABs and discussed the planned introduction of the Free Route concept all over Europe. Upon the initiative and under the coordination of the HungaroControl FAB CE members submitted a joint technological study on Free Route implementation for the whole FAB for Connecting Europe Facility’s (CEF) call for proposal in February 2015.
Under the Hungarian CEOC chairmanship of FAB CE, considerable progress was made in reviving social dialogue as well. During the past year intensive consultation and fruitful debates continued. The Social Dialogue Charter that serves as a basis for the dialogue between the unions and ANSPs was nearly finalised. This document contributes to the handling of crisis management tasks on a FAB CE level and to the improvement of Safety Measurement.
In accordance with the FAB CE ANSP Cooperation Agreement signed in May 2011, the Chairman of the FAB CE CEOC is assigned for one year. The chairmanship in June 2014 had been transferred from Dragan Bilac, head of the Croatian air navigation service provider to Kornél Szepessy, CEO of HungaroControl. In June 2015 Franc Željko Županič, Chief Executive Officer of Slovenia Control took over the chairmanship until June 2016. FAB CE Council, which coordinates the joint decisions on the execution of SES measures required by the EU, will continue to operate under Hungarian chairmanship until the end of 2015.