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EASA Stakeholder Advisory Body Meeting

ERA attended the fifth European Aviation Safety Agency’s Stakeholder Advisory Body Meeting at the agency’s headquarters in Cologne, Germany on 25-26 October. This valuable meeting provided information concerning the European aviation regulatory framework and an opportunity for ERA to feed back into the rulemaking process, on behalf of our industry stakeholder members.

A majority of proposed agency actions directly affect European member states and industry. Advisory bodies provide the agency with a forum for consultation of interested parties and national authorities on agency priorities, both at strategic and technical level. Consultation covers all aspects of the rulemaking process. They also advise the agency on EU-wide safety priorities, strategic and horizontal issues and are key contributors to the Agency Rulemaking Programme and the European Plan for Aviation Safety.

The most senior advisory bodies are the Member States’ Advisory Body (MAB) and associated Technical Bodies (TeBs)  which are composed of representatives of the EASA member states, of selected third countries with working arrangements or specific agreements with the agency to adopt and apply the Basic Regulation and its implementing rules, of specific organisations, such as the European Defence Agency (EDA) as well as the European Commission.

Industry is represented through the Stakeholder Advisory Body (SAB), of which ERA is a member. The main functions of the SAB are set out in the MB Decision 20-2015 and in its Rules of Procedure. The Group composition of the SAB plenary is defined in MB Decision 1-2016, whereas those of its Technical Committees (TECs) and (overarching) Committees (COMs) are set out in Annex I to the Rules of Procedure. To date, the following ten TECs and COMs are mentioned in the Rules of Procedure:

  • Aerodromes (ADR.TEC)
  • Air Traffic Management/Air Navigation Services (ATMANS.TEC)
  • Design & Manufacturing (DM.TEC)
  • Engineering & Maintenance (EM.TEC)
  • Flight Standards (FS.TEC)
  • Certification (C.COM)
  • Commercial Aeroplane Safety Committee (CAS.COM)
  • General Aviation (GA.COM)
  • Rotorcraft (R.COM)

The October meeting described a number of new initiatives proposed by the agency following implementation of the new Basic Regulation https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX:32018R1139 on 11 September 2018, including provision of ground handling regulation, and monitoring of English language proficiency standards across EU states. Cybersecurity, development of electronic pilots licences for Part-FCL aircrew, monitoring of member state compliance with EU implementing regulation and competencies, including provision of EASA assistance in the event of insufficient resources were also discussed. Other topics included the significant volume of surveys that the agency distributes to stakeholders each year and their perceived economic impact and overall effectiveness – an issue highlighted at the recent ERA Operations Group meeting in Edinburgh.

The increasing importance of proper dialogue with the EC Social Dialogue Committee in the field of aviation: under the new Basic Regulation, interdependencies between civil aviation safety and socio-economic factors necessitate EASA activity in field of social dialogue.

Each of the Technical Committees reported on its activities since the last meeting (ERA is also a member of the Flight Standards and Engineering and Maintenance Committees), and senior members of the agency provided EASA opinion on industry perception of the European Plan for Aviation Safety and other relevant and topical issues.

The Stakeholder Advisory Body is an important forum for our members and we will continue to adopt SAB matters into our daily work plan as well as report to and consult with members.

For further information on the Stakeholder Advisory Body, please contact russell.dudley@eraa.org