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EU's Tajani to press for 'global' air safety instrument

European transport commissioner Antonio Tajani has floated a tentative proposal to expand the European Union's safety standards beyond its borders.

The initiative follows a meeting between Tajani and European Aviation Safety Agency chief Patrick Goudou and in the wake of the 30 June loss of a Yemenia Airbus A310-300 on approach to Moroni airport in the Cormoros Islands.

Yemenia's safety standards had previously been under scrutiny by the European Commission's air safety committee, but the carrier escaped sanctions. The airline has, however, been "immediately invited" to appear before European authorities for an assessment in the wake of the accident.

Tajani says that air safety could be improved by extending aviation standards in Europe, through a "global instrument". He has not indicated how this would function, but Tajani says he is initiating contact with the International Civil Aviation Organisation and International Air Transport Association to explore options.

"While the level of aviation safety in Europe is very high, it is not in dispute that several actions could be taken to further improve it," says the EC.

It adds that it will "accelerate" implementation of safety regulations for third-country operators in conjunction with EASA.

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