Strategic Meetings Summit London, 26 September,
September 29 2022, Kimpton Fitzroy London
Friday 30 September 2022, JW Marriott Grosvenor
Chiefs of Europe's leading airlines told Daniel Calleja, the EC's designated director for air transport, that the industry faced “massive challenges.”
At the meeting organised by the Association of European Airlines (AEA) in Vienna, Mr Calleja heard that AEA members had last made a collective profit in 1998. Their joint losses since then totalled more than €6bn.
Outside factors like the surging cost of fuel have dashed hopes of any profit for 2004.
AEA chairman and Austrian Airlines' ceo Vagn Soerensen told Mr Calleja: “Our business is subject to deep-seated structural inefficiencies and they must be addressed by a regulatory programme which sees the Big Picture.”
In the eleven years since the market had been liberalised, he said, regulation had been piecemeal and haphazard, unnecessarily burdensome in some areas, while lacking in others.
“Airlines are cutting costs at an extraordinary rate, but we find that our internal economies are being neutralised by waves of external cost increases,” Mr Soerensen said.
The meeting presented Mr Calleja with a copy of the AEA's Action Plan which looked at problems facing the industry including capacity, relations between airports and airlines, security, external relations and environmental issues.
After the meeting, Mr Soerensen said: “We believe that constructive dialogue with our regulators, such as we have achieved today, helps to position our industry on the radar screen of European policy. From now on we must move forward in partnership; after all we share the same goals of customer satisfaction, environmental responsibility and European competitiveness.”