European safety regulators have expressed unease over an apparent deterioration in the results of ramp inspections conducted on Egyptian airlines.

Egyptian carriers have never been blacklisted by the European Commission.

But in the latest blacklist revision, the Commission states that ramp inspections under its foreign-aircraft safety assessment programme have revealed a “growing number” of concerns.

Thirteen Egyptian airlines have third-country operator approval from the European Union Aviation Safety Agency, a requirement for operating to EU destinations. Ramp inspections are carried out as part of the monitoring process for this scheme.

“Significant findings for a number of Egyptian [authorised] air carriers have been noted,” says the Commission, without identifying the specific airlines involved.

AlMasria Universal-c-Eric Salard Creative Commons

Source: Eric Salard/Creative Commons

EASA has rescinded third-country authorisation for AlMasria Universal

It points out that the EASA third-country approval for Cairo-based AlMasria Universal Airlines has been suspended, on safety grounds, for the second time in two years.

While the Commission is not taking immediate action against Egyptian carriers, it says it will organise a technical meeting with the Egyptian Civil Aviation Authority in the first quarter of next year.

This follows communications between the two sides earlier this year, during which the Commission expressed concern over the safety performance of Egyptian-certified carriers. It requested documentation relating to organisation and oversight, which is still being reviewed.