EUROCONTROL Performance Review Commission released two reports comparing operational and economic performance of Air Traffic Management in US and Europe

Brussels, Belgium, 2013-12-09 — / — The EUROCONTROL Performance Review Commission (PRC) has published two reports comparing the operational and economic performance of Air Traffic Management (ATM) in the US and Europe.

The first report provides a high-level comparison of operational ATM performance between the US and Europe from 2008 to 2012.

Building on established operational key performance indicators, the goal of the joint study between the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and EUROCONTROL was to understand differences between the two ATM systems in order to further optimise ATM performance and to identify best practices for the benefit of the overall air transport system.

Operational performance improved on both sides of the Atlantic between 2008 and 2012 in a context of declining traffic.

Variations observed in specific performance indicators can often be linked to differences in ATM policy, implementation or operating strategies, such as:

  • when and where air traffic flow management measures are applied;
  • a more fragmented structure of service provision in Europe;
  • greater flexibility of the US system in mitigating demand/capacity imbalances through the use of traffic flow initiatives that are coordinated across multiple en route centres;
  • airline and airport scheduling, their impact on airport throughput and the ability to effectively sustain airport throughput in bad weather.

The second report compares Air Navigation Services (ANS) gate-to-gate cost-efficiency trends and underlying drivers between 2002 and 2011. It was prepared by the PRC in co-operation with the FAA. It builds on EUROCONTROL’s ATM cost-effectiveness (ACE) framework and data submitted by air navigation service providers for economic benchmarking purposes.

Although the gap has narrowed, unit costs in the US were still around 34% lower than in Europe in 2011. The observed gap in ANS cost-efficiency performance arises from considerably higher productivity and lower unit support costs in the US compared with Europe.

“These reports provide further information and analysis from the PRC, in co-operation with the FAA, to help everyone play their part in improving ANS performance.” observed Mr Ralph Riedle, PRC Chairman.

Both reports can be found on the EUROCONTROL website.

For further information, please contact:
Kyla Evans/Catherine De Smedt, Tel: +32 2 729 50 95

For more information via the website:

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EUROCONTROL, the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation, has as its primary objective to develop a seamless, pan-European air traffic management (ATM) system that fully copes with the growth in air traffic, while maintaining a high level of safety, reducing costs and respecting the environment. EUROCONTROL has 39 Member States: Albania, Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. On 5 December 2012, the 40th Member State, Georgia, signed the Protocol of Accession to the Intergovernmental Organisation, EUROCONTROL.


US/Europe comparisons of ATM operational and economic performance

US/Europe comparisons of ATM operational and economic performance