The European Commission (EC) has updated its Air Safety List, releasing all airlines certified in Gabon from the list of those prohibited from operating within the European Union (EU).
The new list, issued this week, bars EU operations by 115 airlines and designates the Armenian Civil Aviation Committee for additional scrutiny “because of signs of a decrease in safety oversight,” the EC said.
The update was based on the unanimous opinions of aviation safety experts from EU member states and was supported by the European Union Aviation Safety Agency and the European Parliament’s Transport Committee.
“Today’s decision illustrates our continuous efforts to offer the highest level of safety,” EU Commissioner for Transport Adina Valean said. “Not only to European travelers, but to travelers worldwide, because aviation safety knows no border or nationalities.”
The EC says the Air Safety List helps to maintain high levels of aviation safety in the EU and encourages affected airlines and countries to improve their safety levels, with the goal of eventually being removed from the list.
The 115 airlines on the list include 109 airlines that have been certified in 15 states: Afghanistan, Angola (except for two airlines), Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, The Kyrgyz Republic, Liberia, Libya, Moldova (except for three airlines), Nepal, São Tomé and Príncipe, Sierra Leone and Sudan. In each case, the EC cited “a lack of safety oversight by the aviation authorities.”
In addition, six individual airlines are banned from the EU because of airline-specific safety concerns, the EC said. They are Avior Airlines of Venezuela, Iran Aseman Airlines, Iraqi Airways, Blue Wing Airlines of Suriname, Med-View Airlines of Nigeria and Air Zimbabwe.
Three other airlines — Air Koryo of North Korea, Air Services Comores of the Comoros and Iran Air — are permitted to operate in EU airspace only when operating specific airline types.