The European Regions Airline Association (ERA) has released its position paper on Brexit, urging policymakers to retain EU Regulation 1008/2008 principles in order to allow minimum disruption to services currently operating within the European region to and from the UK.

The organization suggests that the future air transport relationship between the EU and the UK should be based on the main principles of current regulation, with particular attention paid to the current principles of operation license granting conditions (Article 4 a, b, f) and the requirements to obtain an air operator certificate depending upon the possession of a valid AOC specifying the activities covered by the operating license (Article 6, part 1).

The organization also stressed the importance of the provisions on leasing allowing the air carrier to have one or more aircraft at its disposal through a dry or wet lease agreement and allowing to freely operate wet-leased aircraft as long as it is registered within the European Community and does not lead to endangering safety (Article 13, part 1) and the provisions on intra-community air services, entitling EU air carriers to operate intra-European Union air services (Article 15, part 1).

“ERA’s position is focused on ensuring open and free traffic rights for all EU and UK carriers between the EU and the UK,” said Caroline O’Sullivan, ERA Manager Policy and Technical. “ERA is also focusing on ensuring that EASA regulations continue to apply to the UK carriers and that the EU and UK carriers can continue to freely lease aircraft to each other without prior approval“.

Tens of thousands of air passengers around the world were disrupted by a British Airways global computer crash earlier this year. One passenger described London’s Heathrow airport as “honestly the angriest place I’ve ever seen”. The actual outage lasted just 15 minutes, but it grounded the entire British Airways fleet, inconvenienced more than 75,000 customers, and has so far cost £80m in compensation.

Residents of Britain voted to leave the EU in a referendum on June 23, 2016. The country is expected to officially part ways with the EU in March 2019.

In anticipation of the events, several carriers have already initially expressed deep concern towards the future of flights to and from Britain, with EasyJet registering for Austrian air operator’s certificate and Ryanair threatening to leave UK. However, now the positions and attitudes are shifting on the more moderate side, as demonstrated by the latest statement by Virgin Atlantic, which expressed an optimistic attitude towards the matter in September 2017.