Sky News signals Government will seek continued EASA membership

Sky News Political Editor Faisal Islam today covered a potentially significant development in the Government’s post-Brexit plans for aerospace.

Under the headline “Govt to stay in EU air safety body in blurring of Brexit red line”, he reports that Sky understands Ministers will seek to keep the UK as a member of the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), despite European Court of Justice (ECJ) oversight of the regulator.

According to the report, the Government is exploring Article 66 of EASA regulations to develop an appropriate route for the UK to participate as a non-EU country, as Norway and Switzerland do today.

Continued membership of EASA, the body that certifies the sale of aircraft components for use and sale and shapes standards across the industry, is an ADS priority for a UK deal with the EU.

If the UK remains a member of EASA, companies in the aerospace sector will continue to benefit from requiring only a single set of certifications for their personnel, facilities and products – delivered through a pan-European regulatory system, with bilateral agreements in place to cover markets around the world.

Speaking at last week’s House of Commons Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee hearing on the implications of Brexit for the aerospace sector, ADS Chief Executive Paul Everitt said:

“Our route to market is very much facilitated by the regulatory regime.  Without that regulatory regime we do not have a route into global markets, whether Europe, US or China, because of the mutual recognition arrangement.

“The UK was a prime mover in shaping the European Aviation Safety Agency and it was designed to ensure that there was a high‑level core of expertise that sat within the European body to manage the complex safety issues, particularly around new product certifications.  You cannot rebuild that capability in a short period of time.”

To see the full Sky News report, click here: https://news.sky.com/story/govt-to-stay-in-eu-air-safety-body-in-blurring-of-brexit-red-line-11151049