In the SESAR CEO Survey 2016 Air Traffic Management magazine has comprehensively surveyed the senior leadership within the European industry on SESAR deployment and the prospects for success.

SESAR represents a huge change to the status quo and will require an appropriate safety framework and oversight. Will a common single regulatory framework be necessary with all technical regulation conducted by, say, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA)? Where should the competence to oversee SESAR oversight ultimately reside?

Kornél Szepessy, HungaroControl I believe that EASA should have a significant role in the safety framework and oversight of SESAR. However, the existing know-how and competence within Eurocontrol, the European organisation for the safety of air navigation, needs to be taken into account.

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EASA should work together closely with Eurocontrol in order to find a way forward that can satisfy all parties, something that would represent a logical evolution and be consistent with applicable legal requirements that could be the basis of a single European safety analysis and regulatory framework.

Eamonn Brennan, IAA The introduction of interoperable technology and harmonised procedures across the EU will require an EU-wide harmonised safety framework. The rules and standards should be made and clearly defined by EASA in consultation with the various relevant stakeholders with oversight devolved to the NSAs.

Olle Sundin, LFV I do see a need for stronger centralised regulation but not at the price of slower progress. There is a need to re-use approval and safety work in order to reduce costs in this area.

Martin Rolfe, NATS We need to ensure that we have the ATM equivalent of airframe certification which sits quite clearly with EASA, while at the same time ensuring that we have competent local oversight to take care of any local differences encountered in deployment and to monitor the through-life performance.

Magda Jaworska, PANSA ‘Non-local’ deployment – as termed in the ATM Master Plan – is not the equivalent to central oversight. This would not be possible for reasons of both EASA resourcing and the rationales behind each individual deployment.

Where technical standards are available, different industrial solutions may still lead to slight inconsistencies between systems. But this is only one issue. Where no standards are present, oversight shall be based on the impact on known risks. This approach is not new, but the scale of similarity among installations should paradoxically help build the basis for safety assessments. And this basis should be within the competence of EASA.

Cârnu Fănică, ROMATSA Regarding the regulation element of the question, an appropriate and comprehensive single regulatory framework is definitely necessary for the definition and implementation of common technical requirements and administrative procedures in the field of air navigation. This common framework to establish the common rules for civil aviation safety is regulated by EASA. Regarding the oversight element of the question, the general subsidiarity principle has to be applied in the case of SESAR.

Franc Županič, Slovenia Control The safety oversight itself should be conducted based upon experience and best practices defined by the pool of experts to which national supervisory authorities contribute.

Jan Klas, ANS CR Admitting that any change in ATM infrastructure – which has been in fact an inherent factor throughout the industry’s entire existence – needs new safety oversight, could be interpreted in a way that may make the current regime seem insufficient.

This is not acceptable as it would negate the immense effort of our company and of my colleagues.

The establishment of EASA and subsequent search for a role here resembles more a power play than anything else. The role of EASA should be, for example, to support safety regulation processes which now face really only legal hurdles, such as cross border operations and related responsibilities in terms of safety. There are many such topics like that.

Johan Decuyper, Belgocontrol Regulation is indeed an important issue in the preparatory process of the implementation of the Single European Sky. Relevant regulation and related standards should be available well in time for supporting deployment. It is up to States to decide who should play which role in the regulatory framework.

Georgi Peev, BULATSA When it comes to SESAR research, safety is not that crucial. Oversight related to SESAR deployment can profit from the well-established mechanisms of EASA but also rely on the respective national supervisory authorities (NSA). Along with safety, all human factors should be carefully reflected in order to achieve a successful deployment.

Dragan Bilać, Croatia Control I would support any idea which leads to European standardisation and harmonisation, which would be more efficient, where ANSPs would be supported in increasing the safety and quality of services. In case of overall oversight of SESAR, EASA should play the key role, but it is up to States, EASA and NSAs to agree on the most optimised method of regulation and on the oversight model.

Klaus-Dieter Scheurle, DFS In our view, SESAR is not a monolithic new system that would need one single oversight mechanism. Instead, existing ANSPs will implement SESAR technology within their overall ATS and CNS technology. The actual oversight could be up to the existing NSAs as is already the case. However, with respect to safety standards and uniform application of the regulations governing all safety aspects, EASA could act as a facilitator to ensure a common safety framework and a harmonised application by NSAs.

Maurice Georges, DSNA SESAR is the technological pillar of the SES, so it has been designed since the beginning to be compatible with a single harmonised European regulation scheme, where NSAs are committed to verifying the detailed application of EU regulations, while NSAs are themselves subject to standardisation audits by EASA.

Tanel Rautits, EANS I think EASA oversight should be sufficient; we must also keep in mind the expectations of the rest of the world and focus on co-operation with ICAO. The key issue here is to keep things simple and not to build another European oversight monster.

Ángel Luis Arias Serrano, ENAIRE A common regulatory framework is critical for the well functioning of the European network. In this regard, the concept of a network of competent and adequately resourced NSAs is considered essential to ensure the successful implementation of the SES.

Accountabilities of the regulatory tasks at national and European level need to be clear cut so that roles and responsibilities are laid down without overlaps. Concentrating regulation making functions in EASA, with supervision staying delegated to NSAs – with the exception of European centralised services – is strongly supported. Ideally, EASA could also supplement its role with co-ordinating the supervision functions performed at national level by the NSAs. In summary, a combined system of centrally and nationally allocated tasks should prevail.

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