Austrian Competitiveness: What Role for Business Aviation?

The European Business Aviation Association and Austrian Business Aviation Association were delighted to welcome nearly 100 members of industry and Aurtian and European officials to our 26 September event, ‘Austrian Competitiveness: What Role for Business Aviation?’.

During the afternoon forum, EBAA and ABAA jointly called on European and national legislative and regulatory authorities to engage in a constructive dialogue with the industry, to design inclusive and ambitious aviation policies for all airspace stakeholders.

EU and national officials together with industry highlighted the significant contribution business aviation makes to the European economy:

  • 87 billion euros economic output;
  • 374,000 direct and indirect jobs;
  • A based fleet: 3,700 aircraft;
  • 8% of European traffic;
  • 70 medical flights per day.

To unleash the sector’s fullest potential, though, business aviation leaders called on governments to prioritize the creation of comprehensive and inclusive national aviation strategies that enable improved connectivity, efficiency and cohesion across the EU.

“To continue our contribution to businesses and citizens, and to be able to meet the expectations of future generations, the business aviation industry and national and European officials must work together to draft well-informed, ambitious and practical aviation policies in every Member State, for the sustained growth of Europe,” said Athar Husain Khan, EBAA Secretary-General.

“Austria can become the most attractive place for business aviation in Europe, providing that all stakeholders, including policymakers, closely cooperate and engage in a constructive dialogue,” stressed Konstantin Essler, ABAA Chairman.

During the forum, industry experts highlighted several challenges within Austria’s existing aviation framework, which echo similar concerns in other EU countries and thus require critical focus:

  • Disproportionate regulations treat airline and business aviation operations as if they are one in the same.  Austrian legislation does not currently recognize the significant variances between how business aircraft and scheduled airliners are operated and handled. Current regulations for ground handling services are a case in point. The applicable European and National Civil Aviation Regulations should better consider the different nature of business aircraft operation – and thus the different associated risks – compared to scheduled airlines.
  • Burdensome bureaucracy and excessive costs for aircraft registrationled to a sharp decline in business aircraft registrations between 2008 and 2018 in Austria. The business aviation industry recommends adapted processes for business aircraft registration, phase-in/phase-out and operation in Austria to better suit needs.
  • Not all airspace stakeholders in Austria have a seat at the table to co-create safe, fair and effective policies. The business aviation industry is calling on all airspace stakeholders to establish a joint working platform with Austrian policymakers to discuss each segment’s needs and identify priorities for air transport improvements.

“Politics has to be a partner for the private sector in developing Austria as a competitive business location,” underlined Andreas Ottenschlaeger, Member of Parliament, Transport Committee National Council of Austria.

Explore the event photo gallery