Airports Council International Europe (ACI Europe) and European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) have signed a cooperation agreement for the implementation of the joint EASA / ECDC COVID-19 Aviation Health Safety Protocol.

This protocol provides operational guidance to airports and airlines as the European standard. It will act as a reference for states to follow in their efforts to recover from the Covid-19 impact.

As part of the agreement, the European airport trade body will coordinate the continued engagement of EASA with the European airport community.

The cooperation agreement forms a monitoring model for the improvement of the protocol in the light of operational practice and further developments.

Furthermore, the agreement complements EASA’s Aviation Industry Charter for Covid-19, which is used by certain airports to report data back to the Safety Agency.

In addition to the cooperation agreement, ACI Europe also published guidelines for a healthy passenger experience at airports.

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The document follows ACI Europe’s OFF THE GROUND initiative and offers airports a detailed guidance for the implementation of the EASA / ECDC COVID-19 Aviation Health Safety Protocol.

ACI Europe director general Olivier Jankovec said: “There is no doubt that the Aviation Health Safety Protocol developed by EASA and ECDC has been instrumental in restarting of aviation. This is indeed the standard that Europe’s airports are following. The ACI Europe Guidelines we are releasing today are built upon this protocol.”

EASA executive director Patrick Ky said: “We welcome the leadership shown by ACI EUROPE in embracing the EASA / ECDC Aviation Health Safety Protocol and developing further practical implementation advice for their members.

“Effective implementation and consistent application of the Protocol in Europe and beyond is fundamental to the restoration of customer confidence in the aviation industry after the collapse in passenger traffic as a result of the pandemic.”