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The EU Blacklist: Africa over-represented again

26-Apr-2011

The EU has just released its list of airlines banned from the EU and there are few surprises. Despite ongoing growth in African aviation, the continent still has numerous airlines deemed unsafe by the European Union. Even in countries where the ban is not universal, many of the operating airlines are restricted to the use of only certain aircraft on European routes. For instance, Angola’s TAAG may utilize 7 of its 11 aircraft on European routes.

Banned in the EU

Country

Exceptions

Afghanistan

 

Angola

TAAG

Benin

 

Congo

 

Democratic Republic of Congo

 

Djibouti

 

Equatorial Guinea

 

Indonesia

Garuda

 

Airfast Indonesia

 

Mandala Airlines

 

Ekspres Transportasi

 

Antarbenusa

 

Indonesia Air Asia

 

Metro Batavia

Iran

Iran Air

Kazakhstan

Air Astana

Kyrgyz Republic

 

Gabon

Gabon Airlines

 

Afrijet

 

SN2AG

Ghana

Airlift International

Madagascar

Air Madagascar

Mauritania

 

Mozambique

 

North Korea

Air Koryo

Philippines

 

Sao Tome and Principe

 

Sierra Leone

 

Sudan

 

Swaziland

 

Zambia

 

The ban also eliminates the ability of blacklisted airlines to codeshare with European airlines, making travel a more complex adventure. This extensive list, coupled with significant shortfalls in ATC across much of the continent, will continue to limit the benefits of aviation across much of Africa.

The bans also include cargo airlines, which restricts the ability to move goods, especially perishables which might form the basis of an export marketplace.

The continued inability of many African governments to enforce minimal standards is but one symptom of the political and economic problems that continue to plague much of the continent. It is precisely its poor operational record that has encouraged Star Alliance members to consider collectively starting an airline in West Africa that would be compliant with international standards, increasing service to and within the region.

Asia

After being banned for an extensive period, Indonesian airlines have made a comeback with Garuda Indonesia once again expanding into Europe after a long absence. As one of Asia’s most populous countries, this is good news for the Indonesian economy.

However, based on a poor showing during ICAO inspections, the airlines of the Philippines, including Philippine Airlines and the fast growing Cebu Pacific, remain banned from European skies.

The country has also been limited in the expansion of service to the US, where the FAA has given the country’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAAP) a category 2 designation due to poor oversight of international standards. This lax oversight formed the basis of the EU ban as well, “…it’s because of serious and persistent non-compliance of the civil aviation authorities in terms of overseeing and checks on aircraft,” EC transport spokesperson Helen Kearns said.

The Philippine government, as well as the nation’s airlines, defend their safety standards but despite repeated promises, the CAAP has not yet made the necessary corrections that would end the country’s poor ratings.


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