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U.S. Urges Quick Deal on Passenger Data Transfer

The U.S. has urged the European Commission to finalize a deal allowing airlines to transfer data on passengers despite threats by the European Parliament to take the issue to the EU’s top court.

The U.S. is anxious to forge a deal on airline passenger data transfer with the European Commission, Stewart Verdery, the Assistant Secretary for Policy and Planning at the Border and Transport Security Directorate, said on Tuesday. He also encouraged the Commission to finalize the agreement before the EU enlargement in May and the European Parliament elections in June. "We think we are in a good position to move forward right now, trying to get this wrapped up before some of these transitions and so we are encouraging the Commission to move as rapidly as they can," Verdery said. The European Parliament last month threatened to take the Commission to the European Court of Justice if it does not withdraw its decision to transfer air passenger data to U.S. authorities, as it believes there are insufficient guarantees that the data will be protected. The political group leaders will decide on Thursday whether to challenge the EU-U.S. air data deal by court action. (EUobserver.com)

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