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  • Writer's picturePrabhat Phonedekar

EU-India Aviation Partnership Takes Off: Opportunities and Challenges Ahead

Mega orders from Indian airlines are being placed by European firms, who are also operating and expanding the airport as part of joint ventures. This week, EU Commissioner for Transport Adina Valean will go to India for the EU India Aviation Summit.

The aviation industry has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, but there are signs of hope on the horizon.

As countries around the world begin to open up and travel restrictions ease, there is a growing sense that the aviation sector can once again take off.

And one region that is showing particular promise is the partnership between the European Union (EU) and India.

In a recent interview with the Times of India, EU Commissioner for Transport, Adina Valean, highlighted the potential for increased cooperation between the two regions in the aviation sector.

One area where she sees significant opportunity is in increasing direct connectivity between India and the EU. Currently, only 40% of passengers fly directly between the two regions, which suggests that there is plenty of room for growth.

To make this a reality, the EU and India will need to work together to develop the necessary infrastructure, including airports and air traffic management systems.

And this is where the EU's aerospace industry comes in. According to Valean, India is a resource hub that offers a highly developed ecosystem of engineering and digital capabilities, with world-class talent and research facilities.

This makes it an attractive partner for companies in the aerospace industry, from aircraft manufacturing to air traffic management or airport operations.

One of the biggest challenges facing the aviation industry today is the need to reduce emissions and move towards sustainable aviation fuels (SAF).

The EU and India are both committed to this goal, and Valean has announced a new project to support the development of SAF in partner countries.

India will play a key role in this project, given its strong technical competencies in engineering and digital capabilities.

In terms of commercial strategies, Valean emphasized that decisions will be made by individual companies.

However, she noted that the mutual interdependencies between the EU and Indian markets are growing, and that this is a win-win situation for both sides.

For example, major Indian airlines like IndiGo and Air India have recently placed orders for Airbus aircraft, and every Airbus commercial aircraft has critical technologies and systems designed, developed, and maintained in engineering and digital centers in India.

Cooperation in the airport field is also on the rise, with companies like ADP (Paris Aeroport) and Flughafen Zurich building airports in India.

Valean noted that EU companies have vast experience in both technical and financial aspects of airport construction and management, while Indian companies have expertise in digitalization.

By working together, they can create more efficient and effective airports that benefit everyone.

Overall, Valean's interview with the Times of India highlights the potential for increased cooperation between the EU and India in the aviation sector.

By working together to improve direct connectivity, develop sustainable aviation fuels, and build better airports, both regions can benefit from the growing demand for air travel.

And with India's strong technical competencies and world-class talent, it is an attractive partner for companies in the aerospace industry.

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