UK to tell EU it needs to stay in aviation safety body

Published:  4 Dec at 6 PM
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In a slightly desperate move to keep UK-based airlines in the sky post-Brexit, UK negotiators have told the EU Britain needs to stay in the EU aviation safety body.

The message will be given to EU negotiators Monday, and follows intense pressure from both European and UK-based airlines as well as from the US Federal Aviation Authority. The FAA recently informed Britain it only has a few weeks during which to provide a legal structure for aviation safety acceptable to US inspectors’ checks. Reassurances have been given to aeronautical manufacturers and the international aviation industry by the British Department of Transport that Britain will be staying in the EASA.

According to a senior source within the department, the UK’s proposal will be in the form of an offer to the EU based on government calculations that 40 per cent of all aviation technical expertise originates from the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority. Another source views the issue as being part and parcel with the second phase of negotiations, adding it would be ‘bizarre’ if the UK ware excluded from EASA. Brit expats in Spain condemned to longer, far more expensive flights home to see family might consider the outcome more than just ‘bizarre’.

Meanwhile, Brexit is being blamed for a drop in the numbers of EU-based students applying to study at UK universities. Figures have fallen by around 4.5 per cent, representing some 2,375 fewer applicants than in 2016. The fall represents a reversal in the rising year-in-year trend since 2012. Acceptances of British students by EU universities have also dropped, but only by 2.1 per cent. University CEOs are suggesting uncertainty caused by Brexit is the reason for the drop in EU applicants, all of whom pay far more than their UK equivalents to study at British universities.

It’s not all bad news for British unis, however, as international, non-EU students are still flocking to the UK’s top educational institutions. This year’s numbers were the highest ever at 76,380, demonstrating that a British university degree is worth the time, effort and money it takes to achieve. Many international students go on to post-graduate qualifications, and often become long-stay expats in the UK once they’ve found a suitable job.
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