THE EUROPEAN JOINT Aviation Authorities (JAA) should be barred from developing or adopting new aviation regulations (JARs) until its status as a European rule-making body has been established, says the International Federation of Airline Pilots Associations (IFALPA).

The objection follows a European Commission (EC) Transport Directorate working paper aiming to block attempts by the JAA to establish a single European air-safety authority.

The EC argues that such a body would have no rule-making power unless it is backed by legislation at European level (Flight International, 24-30 January, PP3 and 8).

The IFALPA says that it broadly agrees with the EC's criticisms of the JAA's present structure, status and effectiveness. These centre on inefficient decision-making procedures based on the requirement for unanimity among all member states. The EC also complains about the JAA's "informal status", adding that it has " delegated authority to adopt binding decisions...any of its members may diverge from provisions agreed jointly".

IFALPA executive director Terry Middleton says that his organisation approves of the vast majority of what the JAA has achieved, but fears the effects of their "lack of transparency, democracy and accountability".

The JAA secretary general Klaus Koplin points out that the JAA has drawn up a proposal for the convention to form a single authority, and claims that the main difference between the EC and the JAA is how the social aspects of JARs will be handled. Koplin asserts, however, that these issues have never been a problem in the member authorities.

Source: Flight International