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April 10, 2016

Airspace modernisation to boost European economy, says IATA

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has conducted a study which reveals that airspace modernisation will add one million jobs and €245bn boost to European economy in 2035.

By Lopamudra Roy


The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has conducted a study revealing that airspace modernisation will add one million jobs and a €245bn boost to the European economy in 2035.

At present, European air traffic supports 11.7 million jobs as well as $860bn of European gross domestic product (GDP).

However, European airlines travel on average about 50km longer than required, and are therefore delayed by nearly 10 minutes per flight.

According to a study conducted by SEO Economic Research, these inefficiencies are expected to cost the European economy €245bn in 2035, if requisite measures are not taken.

IATA director general and CEO Tony Tyler said: "Air traffic management inefficiency is not just a burden for airlines.

"Travellers suffer wasted time from delays. The environment suffers from avoidable emissions. And businesses face reduced productivity. Combined, all of this has a cost on Europe’s competitiveness."

Europe has been carrying out plans to improve air traffic management through its Single European Sky (SES) project.

The SES project aims to provide a threefold increase in capacity, increase safety by a factor of ten, and reduce environmental impact and costs by 10% and 50%, respectively.

Tyler added: "Europe has failed in achieving the SES goals. Despite a strong European Commission vision and push for SES, national interests have prevailed.

"The incentive to improve efficiency is to make Europe more prosperous with the realisation of €245bn and one million jobs in 2035.

"The launch of this study is a call to action across the spectrum of business and individual interests in Europe to help deliver a stronger, more connected economy."

A fully modernised airspace in 2035 will provide significant benefits to European tourism, trade and economy.

Image: A modernised airspace in 2035 will provide several benefits to European economy. Photo: courtesy of IATA.

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