Brexit & Aviation 106

I’m waiting for the headline: The European Union (EU) has agreed to extend #Article50 a third time.  This could delay any possible #Brexit until June 2020.  Now, that sounds a lot saner than jumping off a cliff edge.  Especially if Britain and Ireland say they can bridge the gap between their two positions.  The Pound Sterling shot up as the markets took stock of the News that Prime Minister Johnson may not want to force us out of the EU on October 31st with No Deal.   Nevertheless, there’s a hell of a lot of people who remain with no trust in this administration.  The cold hard reality is that agreeing with Ireland most likely means the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP)[1] will be very unhappy.  Then the prospect of getting any deal through the UK Parliament gets even harder.

Amongst the latest news from Ireland is a series of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)[2] on Brexit from the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA).  Post Brexit Ireland realises that it will need to develop new trade routes, especially those of air transport.

In the UK a “No-Deal Readiness Report” has just been released[3].  The part of the Government document on UK airlines highlights that Brexit means more bureaucracy and not less as some people may have claimed:

  • UK airlines operating to and from the EU will need to obtain a Part-TCO safety authorisation from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and an operating permit from each relevant Member State. The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) website provides extensive and detailed information on the actions that airlines need to take on its website.
  • UK aviation personnel involved in the operation and maintenance of aircraft (pilots, cabin crew, engineers and air traffic controllers) will need to ensure they have obtained the relevant licences and safety authorisations from the CAA and EASA. The CAA website provides extensive and detailed information for the action that personnel and UK airlines need to take.
  • EU airlines will need to apply for an operating permit from the CAA, their website provides extensive and detailed information on the actions that EU airlines need to take.

Further on the document is quite clear that UK regulatory bodies will no longer be able to license products for the EU market.  UK regulators will take on regulatory functions currently carried out by EU regulatory bodies, like the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) in Cologne.  Further on in section E, the document talks about Aerospace goods.  It doesn’t make pleasant reading.  If the UK leaves without a deal, the EASA will no longer automatically recognise aviation safety certificates and approvals issued by the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

Aerospace companies continue to warn of “serious risk” in current plan, as the UK Government fails to reassure them about participation in EU agencies.   It might be nice to think that the UK will continue to be a global aviation leader but in this new situation it will be in competition with its former partners.  I suppose few who voted in 2016 realised any of this would be an outcome in 2020.

[1] The Democratic Unionist Party is a unionist political party in Northern Ireland favouring British identity

[2] https://www.iaa.ie/news/2019/10/02/iaa-publishes-brexit-faqs

[3] https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/no-deal-readiness-report

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