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Daniel Sarmiento
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10th March 2020
Consumer, Health & Environment Internal Market

Impact of coronavirus on travel by air: EU Slot Regulation

The Commission is addressing the impact that coronavirus has had on the international and European aviation industry, a situation that is deteriorating by the day. 

The current EU Airport Slots Regulation 95/93 requires airlines operate flights or they will lose their right to take off or land at congested airports at certain times of the day (slots), under the so-called ‘use it or lose it’ rule. Airlines must use 80% of their allocated slots under those rules.

As there is a progressively decreasing number of passengers travelling by air, the European Commission will propose targeted legislation to temporary alleviate airlines from their airport slot usage obligations under EU law, by means of an ‘EU Slot Regulation’. This will also decrease emissions by avoiding empty ‘ghost flights’, which airlines continue to operate in order to keep their slots. 

After the Commission’s proposal, the European Parliament and Council of the EU will have to follow the co-decision procedure if the measure is to be adopted. 

Read the Commission’s press release here.

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