European Parliament Sky and Space Intergroup Discusses the Future of EASA

  • September 16, 2015

September 16, 2015 - The AeroSpace and Defence Industries Association of Europe (ASD) welcomes the initiative of the European Parliament’s Sky and Space Intergroup (SSI) to organise a highlevel event that allowed MEPs, EU Institutions and senior Industry representatives to collectively discuss the upcoming revision of the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) Basic Regulation.

Monika Hohlmeier MEP, President of the Sky and Space Intergroup, emphasised the importance of civil aviation to the EU economy and EASA’s crucial role in supporting it. “There are over 18 million direct and indirect jobs depending on commercial aviation in the EU, with the civil aviation manufacturing sector investing over €7 billion per year in research. In this context, the role of EASA is all the more crucial.”

ASD President and CEO of Finmeccanica, Mauro Moretti, emphasised the need for close cooperation between the European Parliament, EU Institutions and industry and highlighted that “the European aerospace industry’s strong record of technological innovation and exports should not be taken for granted since our industry competes on a global level with established players as well as new players who compete under different conditions”.

Patrick Ky, EASA Executive Director, began with his intervention by referring to the safety challenges of today and the need to continue our efforts in building safer aviation. Patrick Ky added that “EASA does not necessarily need new resources. We need the flexibility to adapt them to the market needs, even more since more than 70% of EASA’s Budget comes from the fees and charges paid by the industry”.

Charles Champion, Executive Vice President Engineering, Airbus, emphasised that “safety is the number one priority of the European aeronautics sector at large, and Europe is today one of the safest places in the world to fly”. However, he noted that “EASA is also key to our competitiveness and it is essential that the Agency has the resources necessary to deliver on Europe’s industrial ambitions”.

Chris Barkey, Director Engineering and Technology, Civil Large Engines at Rolls-Royce highlighted the need for European influence in this global industry: “The first 10 years of EASA have been a success – let’s build on that in this update to the regulation – through securing adequate EASA resources, increasing its international reach, evolving its regulatory approach, and acting on understood risk – so Europe continues to be at the forefront of a safe global aviation sector.”

Vincent De Vroey, Civil Aviation Director at ASD reflected on the diverse nature of the civil aviation industry: “General Aviation and rotorcraft are important segments of the civil aviation industry. Regulations for this sector need to be adapted to the safety risks – one size does not fit all. Regulatory burden needs to be eliminated through the accelerated implementation of the EASA General Aviation Roadmap. This will also require several changes to the EASA basic regulation.”

ASD now looks forward to publication of the European Commission’s proposals on the update to the EASA Basic Regulation later this year.