7-Jul-2010 8:19 AM

EC updates list of airlines banned from European airspace

European Commission updated (06-Jul-2010) the list of airlines banned in the European Union to include Suriname's Blue Wing Airlines and expand the operating restrictions on Iran Air. In addition, Indonesia's Batavia and Indonesia AirAsia have been removed from the black list. Details include:

  • Blue Wings Airlines: With this fourteenth update, Blue Wing Airlines is included in the list of banned airlines following a series of accidents and serious deficiencies revealed during ramp inspections of its aircraft;
  • Iran Air: Based on the results of the visit to Iran, the Air Safety Committee unanimously supported the expansion of operating restrictions imposed on Iran Air to exclude  its fleet of A320 and of B727 and B747 equipment from operations into the EU. The EC stated it would "continue to closely monitor the performance of the airline through the results of ramp checks of its aircraft which can operate in the EU and will intensify its consultations with the civil aviation organisation of Iran to find sustainable solutions to the identified safety problems, where practicable through technical assistance";
  • Metro Batavia and Indonesia AirAsia: The EC recognised improvements in the oversight exercised by the Indonesian authorities, allowing the Air Safety Committee to support their removal from the banned list;
  • Gabon/Afrijet: The EC stated it "welcomes" the progress made by the Civil Aviation Authority of Gabon's corrective action plan for resolving deficiencies identified by ICAO, and decided to allow Afrijet – which is permitted to operate under restrictions in the EU – to add another aircraft to its fleet;
  • Albania: The EC urged the Civil Aviation Authority of Albania to "intensify its oversight in relation to all carriers and continue to implement the action plan agreed with the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), to give priority to those areas which raise safety concerns and to speed up its technical and administrative capacity building"; 
  • Banned carriers: Four carriers are fully banned in the EU: Ariana Afghan Airlines (Afghanistan), Blue Wing Airlines (Suriname), Siem Reap Airways International (Cambodia) and Silverback Cargo Freighters (Rwanda). All carriers from 17 countries – 278 companies in total – are banned: Angola, Benin, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon (with the exception of three carriers that operate under restrictions), Indonesia (with the exception of six carriers from which restrictions have been removed), Kazakhstan (with the exception of one carrier which operates under restrictions), the Kyrgyz Republic, Liberia, the Philippines, Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone, Sao Tome and Principe, Sudan, Swaziland and Zambia. There are nine carriers allowed to operate under restrictions and conditions: Air Koryo (DPR Korea), TAAG Angola Airlines, Air Astana (Kazakhstan), Iran Air, Gabon Airlines, Afrijet and SN2AG (Gabon), Air Service Comores and Ukrainian Mediterranean Airlines (Ukraine). [more]

European Commission: "We cannot afford to compromise on air safety. Where we have evidence that air carriers are not performing safe operations or where regulators fail in their obligation to enforce safety standards, we must act to guarantee safe skies for our citizens when they travel. We are ready to support those countries which need and want to build up their technical and administrative capacity to guarantee the highest standards of safety of civil aviation. The Commission is working closely with the European Aviation Safety Agency to further strengthen its efforts in providing technical assistance," Siim Kallas, VP Responsible for Transport. Source: Company Statement, 06-Jul-2010.

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