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ERA letter to Transport Commissioner

ERA letter to Transport Commissioner

8 February 2023: ERA has today sent a letter to Transport Commissioner Vălean to call for support and ask EU policymakers to urgently proceed with the revision of Air Services Regulation 1008/2008, to promote and encourage regional connectivity whilst fostering the sector’s sustainability.

In its letter, ERA stressed the need for regulatory support for regional aviation at EU level to preserve essential connectivity and support for Europe’s regions, promoting social and territorial equality and cohesion as well as contributing to increased tourism, investment and job creation.

Reviewing the current PSO framework to be more flexible and efficient is key for ERA carriers. PSOs routes play a significant positive role in terms of connectivity, especially for communities in remote areas which often do not have direct access to essential services – such as healthcare, education, social services – and hence rely on services connecting to larger centres of population. Maintaining these essential routes after the COVID-19 pandemic is vital for the future viability of regional airlines and the connectivity and services they provide.

ERA members airlines strongly support the introduction of environmental criteria in the PSO framework as well as the possibility of extending the duration of PSO contracts to attract investment in the renewal of airline fleets. These new criteria would favour regional carriers’ investments in more CO2-efficient aircraft and SAF blending.

ERA member airlines also believe that regional aviation could benefit from a liberalisation of ownership & control rules for foreign investors, as well as the leasing of non-EU aircraft oversight.