Procedure : 2015/2933(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : B8-1146/2015

Texts tabled :


Debates :

Votes :

PV 11/11/2015 - 16.2
CRE 11/11/2015 - 16.2
Explanations of votes

Texts adopted :


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See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B8-1146/2015

to wind up the debate on the statement by the Commission

pursuant to Rule 123(2) of the Rules of Procedure

on the future Aviation Package (2015/2933(RSP))

Wim van de Camp, Marian-Jean Marinescu, Deirdre Clune, Georges Bach, Markus Pieper on behalf of the PPE Group

European Parliament resolution on the future Aviation Package (2015/2933(RSP))  

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to its position adopted at first reading on 12 March 2014 on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the implementation of the Single European Sky (recast)(1),

–  having regard to its position adopted at first reading on 26 February 2014 on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the European Union Agency for Railways and repealing Regulation (EC) No 881/2004(2),

–  having regard to its resolution on the EU’s External Aviation Policy – Addressing future challenges(3),

–  having regard to Rule 123(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas in 2012, the air transport economy in Europe directly supported 2.6 million jobs and is contributing over 2.4% of EU GDP;

B.  whereas more than 20 000 job cuts have been implemented and scheduled by European airlines since 2012;

C.  whereas EU airlines faces many competitive challenges on both the internal and external markets;

D.  whereas the EU and its Member States have imposed various legal and financial regulations that have unilaterally increased the burdens in Europe on the European aviation sector (such as the intra-EU Emissions Trading Scheme, extended passenger rights, national taxes, restricting operating hours);

E.  whereas the Commission intends to deliver an Aviation Package by the end of 2015 which seeks to identify the challenges facing the EU aviation sector;

1.  Considers that the Aviation Package should provide a much needed boost for the European aviation industry, should improve the competitiveness of the sector, lead to a level playing field and set out a long strategy for Europe’s aviation industry;

2.  Calls on the Commission when drafting the Aviation Package to take into account and include Parliament’s first reading on the Single European Sky 2+ (SES2+) and the EASA as well as Parliament’s report on the EU’s External Aviation Policy – Addressing future challenges;

3.  Emphasises that the aeronautics industry is a major contributor to EU growth and jobs and is closely linked to competitiveness in the EU aviation sector (e.g. positive export balance, cleaner technologies for European aircraft, SESAR deployment, SES, bilateral air safety agreements, maintenance chain) generating a turnover of around EUR 100 billion per year and sustaining some 500 000 direct jobs; asks therefore for proactive policies in order to support and develop the aeronautics industry;

4.  Underlines the fact that competition is directly linked to innovation; recommends, therefore, that the Commission take into account and support innovation in the fields of air traffic management (automated air traffic control (ATC), free routing), remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPASs), alternative fuel solutions, aircraft and engine design (greater efficiency, less noise), airport security (touchless solutions, one-stop security), digitalisation, and multimodal solutions (computerised ground handling services); further recommends that it support global environmental solutions, such as a global market-based measure to address CO2 emissions from international aviation and abandon regional schemes such as the aviation ETS, airport greening (green taxiing) and new business models (such as the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) New Distribution Capability (NDC), self-connection or integrated ticketing);

5.  Calls on the Commission to act within its competences and remove EU and national burdens from European airlines in order to strengthen competitiveness in the European air transport sector;

6.  Highlights the loss of competitiveness of EU airports vis-à-vis outside EU airports; requests a proactive policy in order to strengthen their capacity and connectivity;

7.  Asks the Commission to review Regulation (EC) No 868/2004 regarding the causes of its non-implementation by October 2015 at the latest and to remove all obstacles in its design as conditions in order to make it an effective tool against the distortion of competition in the aviation sector;

8.  Deplores the fact that Regulation (EC) No 868/2004 on protection against unfair pricing practices in the air transport sector has never been enforced and calls on the Commission to revise Regulation (EC) No 868/2004 in order to safeguard fair competition in EU external aviation relations and reinforce the competitive position of the EU aviation industry, prevent unfair competition more effectively, ensure reciprocity and eliminate unfair practices, including subsidies and state aid awarded to airlines from third countries that distort the market in order to improve the political strategy at European level so as to quickly resolve this conflict, based mainly on the application of a transparent ‘fair competition’ clause;

9.  Notes that European airports are facing significant competitive pressures – from both airlines and competing airports, resulting in users not paying the full cost of the infrastructure; urges the Commission therefore to take these developments into consideration in implementing the Airport Charges Directive;

10.  Highlights the importance of small and regional airports within the Union as another way to decongest larger and hub airports through indirect connections; urges the Commission, together with the Member States, to present an EU long-term strategic plan addressing the challenges and opportunities of regional airports inside the EU, as air connectivity should be promoted and should become one of the pillars of the EU’s growth and jobs strategy;

11.  Emphasises that the negotiations of comprehensive aviation agreements with the EU’s major trading partners such as neighbouring countries, BRIC, ASEAN countries, Japan and Turkey should be a strategic goal and that such negotiations should be launched or accelerated; points out that this should provide new opportunities for EU air carriers, enhance financial transparency and safeguard fair competition and should therefore ensure a level playing field for European airlines with their competitors from third countries; insists that in order to make these comprehensive aviation agreements effective in practice, a safeguard clause must be included that defines an offence and the legal consequences of its violation and dispute settlement;

12.  Calls on the Commission to negotiate an EU air agreement with the Gulf States as soon as possible; insists that transparency of financing and a strong fair competition clause need to be at the core of such an agreement;

13.  Notes that the air transport sector is not regulated on a worldwide basis as it is not covered by the WTO; calls on the Commission to negotiate with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) in order to push for worldwide regulation for fair applicable competitiveness rules; underlines the importance of globally agreed rules within the ICAO, in order to reduce aviation emissions; recognises that the ICAO is committed to the development of a global market-based mechanism;

14.  Calls on the Commission and the Member States to accelerate the implementation of the Single European Sky through the adoption of the SES2+ package and through the full implementation and operation of functional airspace blocks (FABs) and specifying state aid guidelines or better implementation and quicker approval of procedures of business plans, as the existing fragmentation of European airspace is a major burden on European air carriers;

15.  Expects that the Aviation Package will have to make provision for safe legislation that is directly linked to working conditions in the aviation sector, as the EU needs to use the full range of internal and external tools available to defend the European aviation industry more effectively against unfair practices;

16.  Requests the enhancement and harmonisation of the safety chain by attracting and retaining a skilled, highly trained and adaptable workforce;

17.  Recommends that DG Move and DG EMPL work together and that the Aviation Package includes social provisions, as discussed during the high-level conference entitled ‘A social agenda for transport’ organised by the Commission on 4 June 2015;

18.  Recommends pinning down the concept of ‘principal place of business’ so that the operating licence is granted by a state if the volume of air transport therein is substantial and also in the context of the coordination of social security systems and labour law, aligning the definitions of ‘home base’ in Commission Regulation (EU) No 83/2014 and in Regulation (EU) No 465/2012; recommends, in addition, shortening the transitional period and clarifying the situation of aircrew that have multiple home bases;

19.  Recommends a revision of the application of the Directive on Temporary Agency Work in order to promote direct employment as the standard model and limit the use of atypical employment;

20.  Suggests measures to combat the increase in socially problematic business practices such as ‘flags of convenience’ and the use of atypical forms of employment such as bogus self-employment, pay-to-fly schemes, and zero-hours contracts; considers that these should be forbidden as they have potential safety implications; calls for a revised definition of a company’s ‘principal place of business’ that would require airlines to demonstrate substantial aviation activities in a country;

21.  Calls for the full implementation of the SESAR programme which requires close cooperation among, and a financial commitment from, the Commission, air navigation service providers, air carriers and airports; calls therefore for a total system approach of all aviation domains covering all phases of the flight starting on the ground, with a stronger role for the EASA within the SES-SESAR environment within of a EU-EASA system governing safety, security, environment and performance;

22.  Welcomes the intention to increase the EASA’s responsibilities and therefore expects the amended Regulation (EC) No 216/2008 (Basic Regulation) to ensure the establishment of a comprehensive safety management system and to entrust the EASA with the safety aspects of EU security measures and the safety aspects of commercial space transport and remotely piloted aircraft; calls on the Commission to grant the EASA the status of single aviation authority in Europe in view of the wide range of responsibilities that will be assigned to it by the legislator;

23.  Calls on the Commission to strengthen the role of the EASA on the international scene to the same level as its major counterparts such as the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA), and to ensure its official recognition within the ICAO, in order to provide a single EU position to ensure a higher level of worldwide safety for the EU citizens, together with the competitiveness and exports of the EU aviation industry;

24.  Calls on the Commission to lift the regulatory barriers to satellite-based air traffic surveillance in order to enable life-saving services for EU citizens and asks the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) to make the necessary spectrum allocation, given that the ICAO has identified satellite ADS-B as the one technology that can assist flight tracking and air traffic management (ATM) surveillance outside of most densely populated areas, where other forms of terrestrial ATM surveillance technologies are limited; notes that it could help governments, air navigation services providers (ANSPs) and airlines in Europe and around the world to increase air traffic management efficiency and capacity, reducing aviation emission, and significantly enhancing aviation safety, all while lowering infrastructure costs and providing the European airspace with another layer of surveillance that could augment the current one;

25.  Calls on the Commission to take measures with a view to improving medical assessment of pilots and the security, entry and exit procedures relating to cockpit doors, following the risk assessment in the EASA Task Force Report;

26.  Insists on ‘risk-based security’ for passenger and freight transport instead of reaction-based measures, on a fair and balanced approach to the sensitive issue of aviation safety in order to meet the needs and expectations of Member States on the one hand and to avoid an unsatisfactory experience for passengers at airports on the other, and on a strengthening of the Aviation Security Service (AVSEC) and Stakeholder Advisory Group on Aviation Security (SAGAS) system for the creation of security measures security; urges the Commission therefore to undertake a feasibility study on the implementation of a pre-check system in Europe equivalent to what is being done in the United States;

27.  Calls on the budgetary authorities to maintain a competitive budget for the EASA that takes account of those new responsibilities in order to have flexible and effective tools available for EU air transport companies to compete worldwide; in addition, asks the Member States and the Commission to increase public financial support for aviation security and public financing of aviation security – which is the norm in other regions of the world, including the United States – in order to allow European airports to boost their competitive position by lowering their airport charges; calls on the Commission to ensure the completion of the original Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) budget, which was affected by the establishment of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI);

28.  Calls on the Commission to address all the aforementioned issues in its Aviation Legislative Package to be delivered by the end of 2015;

29.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council and the Commission.


OJ C 74 E, 20.3.2008, p. 658.


Texts adopted, P7_TA­­(2014)0151.


Texts adopted, P7_TA(2013)0290.

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