Europe faces an infrastructure crisis, SES is ‘failing’ – IATA

European governments need to help aviation overcome an infrastructure crisis, with congestion adding to problems stemming from a ‘failing’ Single European Sky (SES) initiative, according to Alexandre de Juniac, IATA"™s director general and ceo.

The number of slot-co-ordinated airports is a good indicator, de Juniac said. "This tells us where there is not sufficient capacity to meet demand," he said.

"Capacity issues are not limited to Europe, but clearly Europe faces a huge shortfall in both air traffic management (ATM) and airports.

"Inadequate infrastructure negatively impacts the passenger experience in the form of flight delays, longer routes, and inefficient schedules," he continued.

Given that aviation is a critical catalyst for economic and social development, supporting close to 12 million European jobs and US$900 million in economic impact, the need to avoid a European infrastructure crisis is critical, he said.

More runways and terminals can only help so much. European skies are inefficient and, said de Juniac, "the Single European Sky (SES) initiative is failing».

Average flights are nearly 50 kilometres longer than they need to be and delays average around 10 minutes per flight.

An IATA-commissioned study by SEO Economic Research estimated that these inefficiencies, if unchecked, will grow in the next couple of decades to eventually cost the European economy EUR245 billion and one million unrealised jobs.

The SES project aims to deliver a threefold increase in capacity, improve safety by a factor of 10, reduce aviation"™s environmental impact 10 per cent, and cut costs by 50 per cent…

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