17 of Europe’s leading airline groups will call on policy makers to commit to vital action as their sector undergoes a transformation towards more sustainable and efficient flights. They will also emphasise the need for European airlines to remain globally competitive so that they can continue to make a significant contribution to growth, connectivity, trade and jobs in Europe.
Speaking at the Airlines for Europe (A4E) Summit in Brussels, the airline CEOs will highlight much-needed changes for the next EU mandate. These changes are necessary to make this transformation possible and to reduce the unnecessary red tape the industry faces today.

During an important election year, the airlines, which represent over 80% of European air traffic, will call on the EU and Member State Transport Ministers to commit to airspace reform that will enable more efficient flying following the recent compromise on Single European Sky, which failed to go far enough in reforms that would reduce delays and carbon emissions.

Alongside this, A4E members will announce their own pledge which will ensure that the industry is ‘Flying for Our Future.’ They will commit to creating a sector that is:

• Connected,
• Dependable,
• Modern,
• More sustainable,
• and Available to all.

Ourania Georgoutsakou, Managing Director for Airlines for Europe said:
“The EU thrives on the ability of people and goods to seamlessly move around the continent, and we must protect the benefits that this provides.”

“The next few years provide a real opportunity for change and today we are setting out how we want to future-proof flying and have also unveiled our commitment to Europeans.”

“We are today making a Pledge to improve the future of flying but can only do this if policymakers make the vital changes to support our decarbonisation efforts, providing real airspace reform, ensuring our sector remains competitive and completing a true single aviation market.”

At the forefront of A4E’s call to action is competitive decarbonisation. Members are already spending billions this decade on innovative technology like new aircraft and engine technology, as well as Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF) and are calling for government support for SAFs and zero emissions aircraft technology. Smart industrial policy and targeted funding from the EU and Member States will be key, along with collaboration between airlines and other stakeholders such as fuel producers, airplane manufacturers, Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSPs) and airports.

The industry needs to change to remain globally competitive, which will be key to making Europe a world leader in aviation’s net-zero transformation. As SAFs are critical for this transformation, it is crucial that Europe supports affordable and reliable domestic production, particularly in the face of significant market pressure from global players outside of Europe.

A4E will drive progress with stakeholders including Member States, air navigation service providers (ANSPs), civil airspace users and militaries that will deliver positive steps towards a more seamless and efficient European airspace. They will also call for a Europe-wide passenger protection proposal to minimise the effect of strikes which continue to strongly disrupt air travel across Europe with over 20 million passengers impacted in 2023.

Airlines will also reiterate their commitment to keep aviation available for all, so all Europeans are able to take advantage of air travel and enjoy the benefits it brings. A4E will be pledging to make the vital steps necessary to make these changes, but also seek a commitment from policymakers to deliver the necessary reforms to futureproof flying for years to come.

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