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EU seeks deal to ensure flights continue post Brexit

Chase Winter
February 22, 2019

The plan gives British-licensed airlines nine months to obtain EU safety certificates if there is a no-deal Brexit. EU negotiators are developing contingency plans in case Britain leaves on WTO terms next month.

British Airways
Image: picture-alliance/AP Photo/F. Augstein

The European Union on Friday said it was "taking the steps needed" to ensure flights between Britain and the European Union could continue if Britain exits the bloc without a deal on March 29.

Under a draft aviation safety agreement agreed to by EU member states and the European Parliament, British-licensed airlines would be able to continue flights to the EU for nine months after Brexit with their current aviation licenses.

Read more: Citing Brexit, British airline Flybmi ceases operations

"The regulation covers aviation safety certificates for certain aeronautical products, parts and appliances," the European Council said.

If needed, the European Commission may offer extensions beyond the nine month period.

Brexit Stammtisch - MP3-Stereo

The extension will allow British airlines sufficient time to obtain necessary certificates from the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), assuming that the UK is outside of the EU and is a third country.

The text still requires formal approval from the European Parliament and the European Council.

The deal comes after the EU developed a contingency plan on Tuesday that would allow British-licensed airlines six months after Brexit to maintain links with the bloc even if they do not have majority owners from the 27 remaining EU states.

EU negotiators are developing contingency measures to address vital areas in the event Britain leaves the EU without agreeing a deal. These sectors include aviation, transport of goods and finance.