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The context of the resolution

On April 14, 2004, all the North Sea regions participating in SEAPLANE have endorsed a resolution to express their concerns about the situation for regional aviation, and to propose actions to improve it.

The resolution is directed at EU DG TREN decision makers. It has already been endorsed by the North Sea Commission and is supported by several Members of the European Parliament (MEP) and members of national parliaments.

The resolution has been submitted to relevant bodies such as the Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions (CPMR) and the Airport Council International (ACI). It has also been sent to the respective MEPs of the regions affected. On 23 November 2004, the resolution has been presented at a seminar in Scotland House in Brussels which was attended by representatives from EU institutions and interregional organisations.

Resolution to the Commission of the European Union, DG TREN, May 14th, 2004

1 Whereby having joined forces with 13 regional public bodies in five EU countries plus Norway to establish the networking of regional airports, regional airlines and regional transport authorities under the framework of the EU Interreg III B Programme, in order to improve the integration of rural and maritime areas within national and international transport networks (see Annex 1, Annex 2); Bremen logo
Ministry for Economy and Ports, Bremen (DE)
Drenthe logo
Province Drenthe (NL)
Province Groningen logo
Province Groningen (NL)
Highland Council logo
The Highland Council (UK)
Klippan logo
Municipality of Klippan (SE)
Kristianstad Airport logo
Kristianstad Airport (SE)
Kronoberg County Council logo
Kronoberg County Council (SE)
Møre og Romsdal logo
Møre og Romsdal Fylkeskommune (NO)
Lower Saxony logo
Ministry for Economics, Labour and Transport, Lower Saxony (DE)
City of Stavanger logo
City of Stavanger (NO)
Växjö logo
Municipality of Växjö (SE)
Vest-Agder logo
Vest-Agder Fylkeskommune (NO)
Provincie West-Vlaanderen logo
Provincie West-Vlaanderen (FL)
2 Whereby taking into account the strategic objectives of EU policies (including White Papers) for the improvement of regional accessibility, social and economic cohesion, spatial development, and regional competitiveness (see Annex 3);
3 Whereby taking into account the initiatives and opinions, amongst others, of the Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions of Europe, the Committee of Regions and the North Sea Commission, on regional airports (see Annex 3);
4 Whereby making due regard to the findings of the "SEAPLANE Project Report on Activity 1", in which the socio-economic importance of adequate scheduled services between a peripheral region's airport and a network airport has been elaborated (see Annex 4);
5 And based on the findings of the SEAPLANE project so far, the partners have concluded that:
5.1 Regional airports constitute an important element in regional economic development as they contribute added value to regional economies located in peripheral regions.
5.2 Regional airports provide the crucial infrastructure necessary to secure the lifeline air services and to ensure a region's accessibility to and from national and international economic centres is maintained.
5.3 Linking airports of peripheral regions to national and international network airports with sufficient frequency to offer suitable interlining opportunities facilitates the EU policy objectives of social and economic cohesion, spatial development, and improvement of regional competitiveness.
5.4 The current process of slot allocation at congested EU national and international network airports hinders the retention and development of air services to and from peripheral regions at adequate levels of frequency and service, and at acceptable schedules.
6 We therefore call upon the Commission of the European Union to establish policies for the implementation of the following measures:
6.1 Amendment of the existing slot allocation rules at co-ordinated EU national and international network airports to ensure that existing services to peripheral regional airports can be retained and developed, and new (or previously served) routes encouraged to operate (see Annex 5).
6.2 Revision of the rules for Public Service Obligations (PSO) to ensure the continuity of regional air services to peripheral areas (see Annex 6).
6.3 The provision of start-up aid, such as is provided by route development funds, for the inauguration of new regional air routes from peripheral regions, including access to network airports, and for promoting non-road and inter modal transport links.
6.4 The development and monitoring of EU policies to ensure the provision of sufficient runway capacity and the optimum use of existing runways at European network airports in order to secure and increase access for existing or future regional air services to peripheral regional airports (see Annex 7).
Supporting Information
Annexes:
  1. Presentation of SEAPLANE Project Partners Download Annex 1 PDF file [194 KB]
    Summary and documentation of regional authorities supporting the SEAPLANE resolution
  2. PARTNER'S LETTER OF COMMITMENT (template) Download Annex 2 PDF file [173 KB]
    This Letter of Commitment has been signed by SEAPLANE Partners in support of the SEAPLANE resolution
  3. List of References of National and European Institutions Download Annex 3 PDF file [260 KB]
    List of national and international institutions with similar statements, findings and initiatives supporting the SEAPLANE approach
  4. Importance of adequate scheduled air services for peripheral regions: The case of Inverness (Management Summary) Download Annex 4 PDF file [218 KB]
    Summary of the "SEAPLANE Project Report on Activity 1" indicating the socio-economic importance of adequate scheduled services between a peripheral region's airport and a network airport
  5. Description of a management tool on airport slot allocation for flight connections to peripheral regions Download Annex 5 PDF file [195 KB]
    Description of a management tool on airport slot allocation for the establishment or continuation of services to peripheral regional airports at national and international network airports
  6. Revision of the rules for Public Service Obligations [PSO] to ensure the continuity of regional air services to peripheral areas Download Annex 6 PDF file [276 KB]
  7. Provision of sufficient runway capacities and the optimum use of existing runways at European network airports to secure access for existing or future regional air services to peripheral regional airports Download Annex 7 PDF file [222 KB]

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