The European Regions Airline Association (ERA) and other leading industry associations are expressing significant concern regarding delays at airports related to the enhanced border control since Regulation EU458/2017 entered into force.
Together, the associations urge member states to take the necessary measures to minimise the adverse impact on EU citizens and connectivity at EU hub airports.
Between April 2017 and June 2017, and after Regulation EU458/2017 entered into force, the number of delayed flights due to border control issues increased by 97 per cent compared to 2016. Furthermore, in June 2017, the contribution to the average delay time per delayed flight due to border control issues increased by 30 per cent2 compared to 2016.
With the new requirements imposed on border authorities, it is essential that adequate human resources are allocated and processes implemented by member states to minimise the impact. ERA, together with other industry associations IATA, AIRE, A4E and ACI, are calling for member states to urgently adopt the following measures:
In accordance with Article 15 of the Schengen Border Code, all member states should deploy the necessary number of border officers and consider further deployment of automated border control gates, including at secondary airports where non-Schengen traffic is significant.
Member states such as Spain and France which are collecting Advance Passenger Information (API) should make use of the provisions set out in Article 8 paragraph 2e which were specifically added to allow for more efficient checks. The advance verification on the basis of API data could also speed up controls for EU passengers on inbound flights.