by NEFAB Council
- I appreciate the commitment by the Ministers of Transport regarding enhanced cooperation between the six States on this subject matter, says Chair of the NEFAB Council, Mr. Ottar Ostnes, Director General in the Norwegian Ministry of Transport and Communications.
The Ministers responsible for transport issues from Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Norway and Sweden have given a statement of their strong commitment for a continued cooperation in enhancing the functionality in their airspace.
By signing a political declaration on the matter, the Ministers confirmed their intention of pursuing closer cooperation with the aim of a possible future consolidation of the two functional airspace blocks (FAB) as a vision.
As a first step, the Ministers are committed to introducing a specific improvement of the functionality in the management of their airspace by the end of 2015. This functionality is called “Free Route Airspace”, and will facilitate shorter, more direct flight routes within the airspace of the six States. This measure has the potential of reducing flight times and the consumption of fuel, hence also the emission of CO2.
Furthermore, the Ministers are committed to encourage cooperation between the State-owned air navigation service providers regarding provision of air traffic services across national borders. Such cooperation is expected to facilitate synergies and economies of scale, and hence can contribute to better quality of service and lower charges to the aircraft operators.
The Ministers have agreed to establish a cooperation network at Ministerial level with the purpose of facilitating and monitoring the enhanced cooperation. The network is chaired by Norway this year. This is set out in more detail in the Agreed Minutes from the meeting between the Ministries of the six States on 7 February 2013.
The political declaration and the Agreed Minutes are enclosed.