14 April 2023


CLECAT will join the workshop on the EU Slots Regulation impact assessment taking place on 18 April in Brussels.  The event, organised by DG MOVE, will give the floor to the Commission’s consultants on the review of the EU Slots Regulation, to present progress made so far and policy options identified. The event will also allow for an exchange of views with stakeholders. 

CLECAT has since long advocated for a revision of the EU Slots Regulation. Freight forwarders are reliant on a fair and adequate slot allocation regime for full freighter aircrafts, to ensure its customers, shippers, are being served with timely and good quality service levels, which can be expected from air freight, which represents an economically strategic transportation service for the European economy.

In a position paper from October 2022, CLECAT noted that the current Regulation does not effectively consider the unique needs of the air cargo sector.  In particular the EU Slot Regulation does not provide the much-needed flexibility to air freight. The reason for this is that the 80/20 “use it or lose it” rule is difficult to achieve for full freighters since passenger and cargo operate in a very different way. To cope with this difference, it is very important to consider a segmentation of slot pool systems at congested airport, and applying the slot rules differently per segment. 

A revised EU Slot Regulation should ensure a system of fair, non-discriminatory and transparent rules for the allocation of landing and take-off slots to allow optimal utilization and fair competition. Where the demand of landing and take-off slots exceeds the airport capacity, a mechanism to allocate slots is needed. To this extent CLECAT embraces market-based mechanisms for the trading of slots between airlines, as well as the introduction of local guidelines. These local guidelines could be used by member states to prioritize certain market segments, such as air cargo.