International Air Transport Association calls for Single European Sky

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“The volcanic ash crisis that paralyzed European air transport for nearly a week made it crystal clear that the Single European Sky is a critical missing link in Europe’s infrastructure” said International Air Transport Association (IATA) director general Giovanni Bisignani this week.

More than 100,000 flights were grounded due to the volcanic ash last week because individual countries made different decisions over whether or not to open up their airspace.

The Single European Sky would put the skies under one regulatory body and act as a crisis management mechanism, which would eliminate confusion. It will also improve Europe’s competitiveness and environmental performance, said IATA.

Europe’s Transport Council is set to meet on May 4 to discuss the issue of implementing a Single European Sky.

“We have been discussing the Single European Sky for decades… the technical plans are in place,” said Bisignani.

“The 4 May meeting must back up the technical preparations with an implementation time line for a fully integrated Single European Sky and the political will to achieve it.”