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EUROCONTROL PRC report on 2023 European ANS performance ready for consultation

Air traffic controllers overlooking aircraft

The Performance Review Commission (PRC) has released their independent review of ANS performance in Europe in 2023, on which they invite feedback from stakeholders.

The draft 2023 Performance Review Report (PRR) concludes that, despite the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, the ongoing war in Ukraine coupled with notable reductions in domestic traffic in some States prevented traffic levels in the EUROCONTROL area from reaching the levels observed in 2019.

“After the bad performance in 2022, punctuality levels in Europe decreased further in 2023 reaching the worst level on record over the past 20 years. For the first time, ANSPs highlighted adverse weather as being the main cause of en-route capacity constraints, followed by ATC capacity, ATC disruption (including strikes) and ATC staffing. It has been shown that ATC staffing is a significant factor in ATFM delays attributed to weather and ATC capacity which is why the PRC previously proposed additional codes to improve transparency and will continue to pursue improvements in transparency."

Dr Peter Whysall Chair of the Performance Review Commission EUROCONTROL

Despite some efficiency gains through the deployment of more fuel-efficient aircraft, total CO2 emissions from aviation in Europe have grown back in line with traffic recovery which underlines the need to speed up efforts substantially to be able to achieve the ambitious environmental targets by 2050.

Inflation, along with the losses incurred by states due to the COVID-19 pandemic, was a significant factor affecting en-route unit rates. Consequently, the average pan-European en-route unit rate for 2024 increased by 3.2%.

Future performance improvements will require transformational rather than evolutional change to be able to deal with future challenges including increasing traffic demand, environmental sustainability, resilience to major shocks, scalability, and new entrants.

Stakeholders are invited to provide comments on the draft Final Report for the PRC’s consideration before the report is submitted to the EUROCONTROL Provisional Council Meeting in June. The consultation phase is until 12 April 2024.

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