Flights out of Cyprus will face minimum disruption while the effect on inbound air traffic from action by European air traffic controllers next Wednesday could be more serious.
Air traffic controllers union (Paseek) are to join their European colleagues in taking action against European Commission plans for 50% budget cuts and a performance boost in air traffic control service providers.
Head of the Air Traffic Control Centre in Nicosia Haris Antoniades told The Cyprus Daily: “Flights out of Cyprus will be affected to the minimum and the impact will be insignificant but flights into Cyprus, mainly from Central Europe like France where full strike action will take place could be widely affected.
“This means there will be no flight cancellations but there will possibly be some delays of flights into Cyprus depending on the action air traffic controllers elsewhere in Europe will take,” he added.
The air traffic controllers fear that if the Commission’s plans for budget cuts and increased performance are implemented it would affect their salaries and working hours.
The Air Traffic Controllers’ European Union’s Coordination (ATCEUC) has called all its 14,000 members in 26 countries to take part in a European Action Day following failure of talks for changing the Commission’s plans.
In an announcement Paseek said that if the European Commission’s “dangerous proposals” get the nod from the European Parliament there will be serious funding limitations that will directly affect the quality and safety of air traffic services.
“The consequences on the viability of air traffic control service providers will be much more negative in small countries, like Cyprus,” the union said.
The organisation will take part in the Action Day with a work to rule action by serving the minimum number of aircraft in line with regulations.
Landings will take place every five minutes at Larnaca Airport and every seven minutes at Paphos Airport between 3pm and 7pm local times.
The union also plans to inform Cypriot EuroMPs on the provisions of the SES2+ (Single European Sky regulation) which comes into effect this year and will urge them to vote it down.
With its ambitious plans, the European Commission aims to unify European aerospace and create blocks of air traffic control centres to make air traffic control more efficient and cost effective.