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The CPMR is continuing to take an active role in European debates on improving regional air connectivity.

This decision is based on two technical notes adopted in 2017 and a questionnaire sent to member regions, the results of which were presented on 19 October at the CPMR General Assembly in Helsinki.

At the CPMR’s Transport Working Group meeting in November, Gabor Nagy, Policy Officer at the European Commissions’ Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport (DG Move), presented the ‘Aviation Strategy for Europe’, which the European Commission adopted in 2015. This included its state of progress and the topics of interest for peripheral regions.

He highlighted:

  • The Regulation (EC) No 1008/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 September 2008 on common rules for the operation of air services in the Community. The text deals in particular with Public Service Obligations. The Commission intends to propose an amendment by September 2018 and to launch a consultation on this subject.
  • An ongoing evaluation of the Airport Charges Directive. An impact assessment is to be published in 2018.

European aviation connectivity indicator

Dr David Marsh, Head of the Forecast & Network Intelligence Unit within the intergovernmental organisation EUROCONTROL, presented the progress of a European aviation connectivity indicator. This work is being carried out by Eurocontrol in conjunction with DG Move. Dr Marsh also expressed his willingness to share views with the CPMR and its members regions on the framework for finalising this indicator.

The CPMR Islands Commission and Sardinia Region highlighted their priorities and questions on European aviation policy and the need for the connectivity indicator to be used for projects such as the commuter air link in the Mediterranean. They stressed that geographical distance from the mainland is for island regions a source of economic gap that needs to be filled in.