The Rt. Hon. Sir Robert Atkins MEP has landed the task of trying to change the whole basis of how international aircraft movements are managed in Europe.

He is to take a major European Commission policy document on Air Traffic Control through the Transport Committee as "Rapporteur' and is required to make his own proposals for reform and improvement.

"Air Traffic delays are now at their highest level ever," commented Sir Robert, "and this is causing serious and costly inconvenience to businessmen, holidaymakers and every other traveller. You only have to fly from Manchester airport as regularly as I do to appreciate how the situation is deteriorating week by week".

"This Commission Policy Document (The Creation of a Single European Sky) does not go nearly far enough in remedying the problems," continued the Tory MEP, "and I intend to make a number of new and constructive proposals that will make a positive difference. If the EU's Council of Transport Ministers is prepared to be radical and far-sighted by following my suggestions, delays will reduce very quickly." he concluded.

Chief amongst Sir Robert's proposals are:

1. A major review of the military airspace that could otherwise be used by civil air transport.

2. Air Traffic Services should be split from the Regulation of Airspace and put out to tender to the international private sector.

3. Airlines and service providers should be judged and rewarded by success or penalised for failure.

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