EUROCONTROL Annual Report 2016
Message from Frank Brenner, Director General of EUROCONTROL:
In 2016, traffic in the Network Manager area increased by 2.8%, reaching the previous high level of 2008 (10.2 million flights). This traffic increase is being continued into 2017 and the latest seven year forecast, published in February 2017, is for 11.6 million flights by 2024.
En route ATFM delay for 2016 was 0.86 minutes per flight, above the Single European Sky capacity target of 0.5 minutes per flight but significantly lower than the delay in 2008 (1.58 minutes per flight). While the levels of delay were negatively impacted by weather and disruptions (such as industrial action), the primary cause was ATC capacity and staffing.
MUAC continued to expand its capabilities, for example through an agreement with the Belgian Air Force to provide ATC data services. It further demonstrated how the provision of ATM data can be a service by providing remote data to Slovenia Control for successful shadow operations of live air traffic.
The civil-military role of EUROCONTROL was underlined in an agreement with the European Defence Agency on SESAR cooperation. Progress was also seen on an agreement with the SESAR Deployment Manager, which was concluded this year, and on the continuing contribution of the Agency to the SESAR Joint Undertaking. Following the approval of the 2015 European ATM Master Plan, work commenced as part of SESAR 2020 on the new ATM Master Plan for Europe.
Internally, the pressure on reducing costs and improving efficiency was maintained, with the Agency continuing to reduce costs over RP1/RP2 faster than set out in the Performance Scheme targets. Work has also started on improving the transparency of costs, with particular importance both for the allocation of central costs to MUAC and also to the Network Manager.
The importance of greater autonomy for the Network Manager has been highlighted by the European Commission as being a key criterion for re-nomination. EUROCONTROL is committed to working closely with the European Union, with visits to EUROCONTROL by no less than three Commissioners (Violetta Bulc, Neven Mimica and Günther Oettinger). Following extensive work during 2016 an agreement has also now been reached on the EUROCONTROL-EASA roadmap.
Effective cooperation between international organisations, in particular between the European Commission and EUROCONTROL, is vital in order to help make the Single European Sky a reality and to improve the performance of European air traffic management across the whole of the continent.