'Too little, too late' - The Air Charter Association
The UK Government’s decision to introduce new quarantine measures from 8 June is simply “too little, too late,” challenges Kevin Ducksbury, Chairman of the Air Charter Association (ACA).
He argues that the measures, confirmed by Home Secretary Priti Patel yesterday, are being introduced at a time when the majority of the EU is starting to remove similar restrictions implemented at the start of the crisis. The UK’s decision to introduce a blanket quarantine now, “reveals a limited understanding of all sectors of the aviation industry, features inconsistencies that discriminate against aviation professionals, and, in the case of the global air charter industry, prevents high-priority travel by decision makers that is vital to the UK’s recovery and future prosperity.”
“If business leaders, who generate many millions of pounds of investment in the UK economy, and employ many millions of people in the UK, are unable to travel for short periods to the country, we believe this will materially worsen the economic harm for the UK economy and aviation industry and further delay their recovery.”
While there are some exemptions to the arrivals quarantine Ducksbury underlines that, “the exemptions for aviation are limited to pilots and cabin crew, which fail to take into account many other non ‘crew’ roles that are vital for aircraft to continue to fly safely.”
Underlining his frustration that the UK Government has introduced the policy after virtually no discussions or consultations with key stakeholders in the air charter sector, Ducksbury concludes that, “It is disappointing that the Government has disregarded the safe working practices and testing regimes proposed by the Association’s members and other industry bodies which could easily be implemented to allow small numbers of passengers to travel safely across borders.”
BlueSky Business Aviation News | 4th June 2020 | Issue #560