The European Commission (EC) plans to take legal actions against EU governments over a failure to create a single European airspace, "Single European Sky", that should have slashed costs and delays a decade ago.
"Ten years on ... (this) is still not delivering," said EU Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas. "This raises the prospect of infringement proceedings against member states for non-compliance," the commissioner warned.
The EC will launch a system of legal warnings, fines and action at the European court of Justice in an effort to cut extra expenses of around €5 billion a year, which are eventually imposed on passengers by the airlines through additional costs.
EU airspace is currently divided into 650 section, which are run by sixty air traffic control centers and managed by national systems. Due to this fragmentation, planes are forced to cover distances over "bizarre routes".
The system improvement would result in tripled airspace capacity, enhanced safety, lower pollution and reduced air traffic management costs.
The European sky is daily crossed by 27,000 flights.
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