Exemptions from consultations on passenger tariffs and slot allocation at airports

Exemptions from consultations on passenger tariffs and slot allocation at airports

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Exemptions from consultations on passenger tariffs and slot allocation at airports

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Competition > Rules applicable to specific sectors > Competition in transport

Exemptions from consultations on passenger tariffs and slot allocation at airports

1) Objective

To exempt, subject to certain conditions, consultations on passenger tariffs and slot allocation at airports from the competition rules.

2) Document or Iniciative

Commission Regulation (EEC) No 1617/93 of 25 June 1993 on the application of Article 85(3) of the Treaty to certain categories of agreements and concerted practices concerning joint planning and coordination of schedules, joint operations, consultations on passenger and cargo tariffs on scheduled air services and slot allocation at airports [Official Journal L 155 of 26.06.1993].

Amended by the following measures:

Commission Regulation (EC) No 1105/2002 of 25 June 2002 amending Regulation (EEC) No 1617/93 as regards consultations on passenger tariffs and slot allocation at airports [Official Journal L 167 of 26.06.2002];
Commission Regulation (EC) No 1083/1999 of 26 May 1999 amending Regulation (EEC) No 1617/93 on the application of Article 85(3) of the Treaty to certain categories of agreements and concerted practices concerning joint planning and coordination of schedules, joint operations, consultations on passenger and cargo tariffs on scheduled air services and slot allocation at airports [Official Journal L 131 of 27.05.1999];
Commission Regulation (EC) No 1523/96 of 24 July 1996 amending Regulation (EEC) No 1617/93 on the application of Article 85(3) of the Treaty to certain categories of agreements and concerted practices concerning joint planning and coordination of schedules, joint operations, consultations on passenger and cargo tariffs on scheduled air services and slot allocation at airports [Official Journal L 190 of 31.07.1996].

3) Summary

Background

Under Regulation No 3976/87, which authorises the Commission to grant block exemptions to certain categories of agreements and concerted practices which relate directly or indirectly to the provision of air transport services, this Regulation is designed to exempt consultations on passenger tariffs and slot allocation at airports from Article 81(1) of the EC Treaty. The Commission may withdraw the benefit of the block exemption.

Scope

In 1993 the scope of this Regulation was broad enough to include agreements and concerted practices concerning joint planning and coordination of schedules, joint operations, consultations on tariffs and slot allocation at airports which could restrict competition and affect trade between Member States. Numerous successive amendments significantly reduced the scope of this Regulation. It is now limited to consultations on passenger tariffs and slot allocation at airports.

Conditions governing application

The exemption concerning the organisation of consultations on passenger tariffs applies on condition that:

  • participants discuss passenger tariffs only;
  • for each tariff category and for the seasons covered by consultations, passengers are able to combine the service with services on the same route on the same ticket and, in so far as circumstances allow, to replace or change reservations;
  • passenger tariffs are applied on a non-discriminatory basis;
  • participation in consultations is optional and open to all air carriers;
  • consultations are not binding on participants, which means that participants must maintain, after consultations have ended, the right to act independently on passenger tariffs;
  • consultations do not give rise to an agreement on staff pay or other aspects of tariffs covered by the discussion;
  • where tariffs have to be notified, each participant informs the competent authorities of the Member States concerned, on an individual basis, of any tariff not covered by the consultations.

The exemption concerning slot allocation and scheduling applies on condition that:

  • consultations are open to all air carriers;
  • priority rules are drawn up and applied without any discrimination;
  • the priority rules are made available to any interested party on request;
  • new arrivals are entitled to 50% of new or unused slots;
  • by the time of these consultations at the latest, the participating carriers have access to the information.

Air carriers must notify the Member States concerned and the Commission of the date, place and subject of these consultations at least ten days in advance so that observers from the Commission and the Member States can take part in them. Air carriers are required to submit a report on the consultations.

Other provisions

To help the Commission decide whether the block exemption should be extended beyond 30 June 2005, this Regulation requires air carriers participating in conferences to collect certain data on the relative use of the passenger tariffs set in the conferences.

Act Date
of entry into force
Final date for implementation in the Member States
Regulation (EEC) No 1617/93 01.07.1993
Regulation (EC) No 1523/96 20.08.1996
Regulation (EC) No 1083/1999 27.05.1999
Regulation (EC) No 1105/2002 29.06.2002

4) Implementing Measures

5) Follow-Up Work

This summary is for information only. It is not designed to interpret or replace the reference document, which remains the only binding legal text.

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