Category: News


One of the most serious consequences of this process, accepted by the European Commission, is the loss of over 10,000 jobs across Europe

The coming days will be decisive for the future of the ATM industry in Europe.

Today,Thursday 30th, the Transport Committee of the European Parliament will hold a meeting with the seemingly laudable aim of unifying and clarifying the regulatory framework of the Single European Sky. To get this, the old regulatory framework of the Single European Sky, and those related to the provision of Air Navigation Services will be replaced by a new legislative package, well known as SES 2 + .

Behind of this “good intentions”, the new SES 2 + regulatory package is, in fact, the detonator of the fragmentation and privatization of the majority of Air Navigation Services. If SES 2+ goes ahead, only the Air Traffic Services will be appointed by the Member States (as a concession to the member states to avoid fears regarding the national airspace safeguard) while the rest of the services will be subject to unbundling and privatization in such a level, that will be put them completely out from the aeronautical environment.

One of the most serious consequences of this process, accepted by the European Commission, is the loss of over 10,000 jobs across Europe, along with a likely decline in the working conditions of these employees. This fragmentation and multiplication of air navigation services providers will also mean the deprofesionalisation of these essential services in Air Navigation, which will result in loss of quality in the provision of those services, as well as a deterioration of Aviation Safety itself.

Another “battlefront” on these days is regarding to the proposals of the Commission about the performance targets to be achieve by Air Navigation Service Providers during the reference period 2015/2019 (RP2). This are organized in four key areas: Safety, Capacity, Environment and Cost – Efficiency. These objectives are generally described as clearly unrealistic, even bordering the hallucination.

It will put also the Air Navigation Service Providers in serious economic difficulties, because their incomes will decrease by nearly 25 % over current. As you can imagine, like in the previous case, the impact on the quality and safety of Air Navigation Services will be devastating if this requirements goes ahead.
Both initiatives threaten to create the “perfect storm” in the skies of Europe, a storm of unpredictable end, and the first effects will be noticed soon!

Which is the reason of this? Of course, it has a clear relationship to costs reductions. Using the unfairly comparison with the United States FAA, despite the obvious differences, the European Commission is trying to find a way to reduce more and more the Air Navigation Services costs … at all cost!.

Where is the cost reduction to the Airspace users if an extra charge must be paid to support the extension of the activities of the National Supervisory Authorities?

In other words, multiplication of Air Navigation Services Providers will be allowed in order to save money, but this will lead in more expenses (and more resources) to the NSAs, because they will need money to supervise all of them … where is the sense on this?
Regarding ATM professionals, this fragmentation will probably lead to the extinction of several groups of professional like ATSEPs in Europe. ATSEPs have a deep knowledge of, not only his professional matters, but also in Aeronautical environment, which is needed to work in safety related tasks. ANSPs need dedicated professionals, not unskilled and unstable workers!

Of course, this must have a response from the Social part.

Today, the ATC EUC, the European Air Traffic Controllers Unions Coordination is celebrating an Action Day. Total and partial strikes and other acts of protest will continue until day 30.

Also tomorrow, January 30, the ETF (European Transport Federation) has also another day of protest, which includes all personnel of the ATM sector (ATSEPs, AIM managers and ATCOs among others). The protests planned by the ETF, which consist of temporary stoppages, press conferences and press releases spread throughout all Europe. Protest will also be located in Brussels, in front of the European Parliament.

All workers in the European ATM Sector supported the creation of the Single European Sky, and the social part has been actively involved both on the legislative development and the also in the concept and research projects at SESAR JU. However, today we cannot accept this attack on the labor conditions of workers in the ATM industry and the future of the respective ANSP’s in which are they serving.

The FSAI supports both initiatives, which are aimed doubtless to the same aim:
To stop the SES2 + initiative, who has a dogmatic approach to liberalization of air navigation services, ignoring the public service nature of the ATM Industry. Stop a process that harms workers, both in the quality and quantity of their jobs. Stop a process, which seriously jeopardizes the economic stability of the Air Navigation Service Providers, affecting among others the tourism industry our country.

Stop a process that puts the goals of “cost efficiency” before than Safety, and stop a process in which the human factor should be one of the pillars on which the SES must be supported.

Therefore, the FSAI calls all its members and the rest of AENA workers to express their protest against the European Commission.

All actions will be coordinated both within the IFATSEA Eurogroup, and through direct contacts with trade unions, professional associations and other ATM industry professionals in Europe and in Spain.


To follow live TRAN Committee session on the 30th:

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The Footlights Youth Theatre Group production of West Side Story, music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim is grabbing the imagination of the Torrevieja Theatre going public. Seat reservations are selling really well for the show which will take place in Teatro Municipal Torrevieja on Saturday 22nd February 2014 at 2000 hrs. This […]


Rajoy being interviewed by the News Editor-in-Chief of the Antena 3 Group, Gloria Lomana

During a televised interview last week Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said that efforts were begun a long time ago in Catalonia to resolve the real problems of growth and unemployment, and to strengthen the ties that unite the country within the Spanish Constitution and the law.

In response to questions from the News Editor-in-Chief of the Antena 3 Group, Gloria Lomana, he said that the Spanish State is ready for any scenario. “What I can tell you now is that the law will be followed” and that “a referendum aimed at questioning the sovereignty of the Spanish people will not take place”, he said. “What I can assure you of right now”, “is that, as long as I am President of the Government of Spain – and I believe I can guarantee this for the future as well, no region of Spain will become independent”.

The President of the Government, who described the photograph taken in Durango by the former ETA prisoners as “abhorrent”, said he tried to ensure that the meeting did not take place and has requested a legal report to discover whether former prisoners from the terrorist gang can be prevented from standing in municipal elections.

Positive figures in the Spanish economy

As regards the economic situation in Spain, he stressed that positive data is already starting to emerge. He specifically mentioned “a rate of inflation at 0.3% in December that we have almost never seen before” and the improving risk premium. “Until recently, we were paying for Spanish debt at 7.3% but now that figure has dropped to 3.6%”, he said. According to the President of the Government, that represents a saving of some 8.9 billion euros – “money that can obviously be used now to help people in other areas”.

Mariano Rajoy believes that “the economic growth data we have seen recently point to a hopeful future”, including the unemployment data because, “although not good enough, a trend is now apparent that suggests we can be optimistic as we look ahead to 2014 and subsequently 2015”.

Much work still remains to be done “but, today, at the half-way point in this legislature, I am in a position to tell the people of Spain that the worst is behind us. I am aware of the problems, the difficulties and the sacrifices, but they will soon be able to see that those efforts will produce positive results”.

“2012 in Spain was a year in which we had to focus on overcoming the chaos and dreadful economic situation the country was in, with a financial crisis and a public debt crisis of considerable proportions. 2013 was the year in which we created sound foundations for our economy. 2014 is the start of economic growth and job creation, and 2015 will be the year of economic growth consolidation, further job creation and tax decreases”, summarised the President of the Government.

Upcoming reforms

Mariano Rajoy announced that the most important reforms in 2014 will be the tax reform and the reform of the regional financing system. As regards the former, he said it is currently being analysed by a group of experts “who will present their conclusions to us over the course of February. I would like this draft bill to be submitted to Parliament by March or April”, said Mariano Rajoy.

As regards the labour reform, he maintained that these steps have produced results and that the evidence can be seen reflected in the fact that, during a situation of negative economic growth in 2013, unemployment actually fell slightly, which “is a clear sign that the labour reform is a good reform”, he said. Furthermore, he added that the reform has been held in very high regard by an independent body – the OECD.

Other issues

As regards the reform of the so-called Abortion Act, the President of the Government said he is willing to talk and reach the broadest consensus within the limits set by the Constitutional Court.

As regards the lack of understanding with the opposition on matters of State, Mariano Rajoy explained that there are indeed issues on which they logically disagree but that there are others, which Mariano Rajoy believes to be very important – such as attempts to de-construct national sovereignty, the policy on Europe and the renewal of institutions – on which agreement does exist.

Regarding the cases of corruption, he regrets that such cases have arisen and said that the Transparency Act approved by the Government of Spain, the Statute of Public Office and the Criminal Code reform are all aimed at preventing such events from being repeated.

As regards the recent events in Gamonal and the actions by the Mayor of Burgos to cancel the construction works, the President of the Government said that the conduct by the people during this episode of crisis has been “exemplary” and said he respects the decision taken by the mayor to change course.

Mariano Rajoy defended the courage of the ministers who form his government because they have had to take some difficult decisions and have done so bravely, which is why he will always support them, he added.

Finally, when asked about the court summons issued for the Infanta Cristina, the President of the Government said he would like, as the King of Spain himself said, that we are all seen as equal in the eyes of the law, and that includes “the presumption of innocence to which the Infanta Cristina is also entitled”, he insisted. In his opinion, she should not have to renounce her dynastic rights.

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The express bus service between Torrevieja and Alicante-Elche airport carried 72,049 passengers in 2013, a favourable increase of 39.5% over 2012, but still considerably below the 100,000 anticipated annual passengers estimated when the service was launched in 2011. The data has been published by the bus operator this week, revealing that the average daily passenger […]


The tourism department of Torrevieja town hall has come under fire again for wasting money this week, after the Mayor, Eduardo Dolón, bragged about the promotion of the city at the FITUR tourism event only cost a total of 6,000 euro. The criticism has only just come to light after the mayor seemingly forgot to […]


If your New years resolution got off to a bad start – why not make another one? If there are any ladies on the Costa who would like to sing, but lack the confidence to give it a try – now is the time!! The Velvetones Harmony Chorus are hosting relaxed, informal sessions in a […]

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