All Nepalese carriers have been blacklisted by the European Commission following a series of accidents involving regional operators from the Asian state.
Transport commissioner Siim Kallas says the air safety situation in Nepal “does not leave us any other choice” than to apply the blanket ban.
Several major accidents have occurred in Nepal over the past 10 years, typically involving regional turboprops such as Dornier 228s and de Havilland Canada Twin Otters.
The fatal loss of a Sita Air 228 in September last year intensified pressure on Nepalese authorities to address the issue.
“We do hope this ban will help the aviation authorities to improve aviation safety,” says Kallas. He says the European Aviation Safety Agency is being recruited to prepare an safety assistance project for the country.
Seventeen Nepalese operators are listed on the revised blacklist.
Blanket bans have been imposed on 21 countries. A voluntary restriction by Libyan operators on European Union operations remains in effect, although the European air safety committee – which governs the blacklist – says progress is being made in the country.