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Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure EU-2020-47/1576 – measures in European Union

Need for recovery of European aviation

Country European Union , applies eu-wide (or beyond)
Time period Open ended, started on 16 November 2020
Context COVID-19, Green Transition
Type Non-binding recommendations or other texts
Category Promoting the economic, labour market and social recovery into a green future
– Measures to support a gradual relaunch of work
Author Barbara Surdykowska and Eurofound
Measure added 08 December 2020 (updated 13 December 2020)

Background information

Over 20 associations collectively representing the entire European aviation ecosystem have announced a joint commitment to work with policy makers to achieve sustainably and more resiliently from the COVID-19 crisis air transport system whilst supporting the European Union’s Green Deal objectives.

List of signatories:

  • Airlines for Europe (A4E); Airline Catering Association (ACA);
  • Airports Council International (ACI EUROPE);
  • AeroSpace and Defence Industries Association of Europe (ASD);
  • Airport Services Association (ASA);
  • Airport Regions Conference (ARC);
  • Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation (CANSO);
  • The European Consumer Organisation (BEUC);
  • The European Travel Agents’and Tour Operators’ Associations (ECTAA);
  • European Cockpit Association (ECA);
  • European Business Aviation Association (EBAA);
  • European Regions Airline Association (ERA);
  • EFFAT; European Express Association (EEA);
  • European Travel Retail Confederation (ETRC);
  • The European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF),
  • The European Travel Commission (ETC);
  • General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA);
  • EU Travel Tech; European Airport Coordinators Association (EUACA);
  • IndustriAll European Trade Union;
  • Europa Tourism Global Union.

Content of measure

According to the joint statement in order to restore the public’s confidence in air travel there is a need first and foremost for effective coordination of travel restrictions and requirements imposed by Member States. Such measures should be based on a common set of criteria, data and guidelines provided by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency.

The EU and Member States have been called to prepare, implement and enforce simple and unambiguous rules in that field based on 2 pillars:

  • Pillar 1 covers the European Aviation Relief Programme during the period until the recovery of air traffic, which is not expected before 2024 or 2025. This programme should aim to stabilise the sector and help to prevent the huge loss of employment and connectivity that would result from a collapse of European aviation.
  • Pillar 2 covers the EU Pact for Sustainable Aviation. The EU and its Member States are asked to join signatories in defining and agreeing, by the end of 2021, an EU Pact for Sustainable Aviation. It should chart the path towards net-zero CO2 emissions, while also achieving significant emission reductions by 2030, so as to strongly contribute to the EU Climate Action objectives. It should also consider the feasibility of making 2019 the peak year for CO2 emissions from European aviation while enabling the sector to continue delivering its social and economic benefits. Many decarbonisation initiatives, such as those related to electrification, will also benefit local air quality.

Through the Pact, the EU, its Member States and the aviation stakeholders should ensure that social and employment rights enshrined in European and national legislation are applied effectively for all workers. Of particular importance will be effective oversight and enforcement of the social acquis. Equally, there is a need to combat any forms of social injustice or other abuses in the aviation sector.

Use of measure

Not applicable.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Applies to all workers Sector specific set of companies
Applies to all citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
EU level social partners
European Funds
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Agreed (outcome) incl. social partner initiative Agreed (outcome) incl. social partner initiative
Form Direct consultation outside a formal body Direct consultation outside a formal body

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Social partners jointly
  • Main level of involvement: EU level


The social partners prepared the statement together.

Views and reactions

The social partners jointly support their own initiative.

Sectors and occupations

    • Economic area Sector (NACE level 2)
      H - Transportation And Storage H51 Air transport

This case is not occupation-specific.


  • 16 November 2020: Aviation Round Table Report on the Recovery of European Aviation European Aviati the Recovery of European Aviation Table Report on the Recovery of European Aviation (


Eurofound (2020), Need for recovery of European aviation, measure EU-2020-47/1576 (measures in European Union), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.