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Deeper Cooperation Sought Between EU and Regional Airlines

Antonis Simigdalas

Antonis Simigdalas

Antonis Simigdalas, president of the association for European Regional Airlines, has asked Stavros Dimas, Commissioner for the Environment, and Markos Kyprianou, Commissioner for Health and Consumer Protection, to look at ERA’s “A Vision for European Air Transport” as a better starting point for wider policy decisions than the Commission’s present base publication created in 2001, which needs re-examination.

“Undisrupted continuation of air services is seriously threatened by the unexpected effects of various European regulations,” wrote Mr. Simigdalas. “The European Commission does not adequately take into account all the interests concerning quality of air transport connections between Europe’s regions.”

He also pointed out the association’s belief that rail networks are unfairly supported by huge subsidies through the wrongful perception that they are environmentally friendlier. “In today’s world, the speed of transporting passengers, urgent cargo and mail with fares that do not burden state budgets is vital to achieving economic policy.”

Mr. Simigdalas wants association leaders to meet with environmental and consumer protection commissioners to cooperate with them in areas of air transport policy regulation that impact their specializations.

He wrote that both he and the association are at the commission’s disposal and ready to work together to create a European network that would be efficient, economical, environmentally responsible and internationally competitive.

Two key European commissioners have been asked to examine an alternative to a White Paper on transport, currently used as a basis for policy by the Commissioner for Transport.

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