OREANDA-NEWS. June 7, 2012. The State level agreement between Estonia, Finland, Latvia and Norway was signed 4th of June in Tallinn, leading to the establishment of the North European Functional Airspace Block (NEFAB) with the ratification by national parliaments scheduled for autumn 2012.

The Estonian Minister of Economic Affairs and Communications, Mr. Juhan Parts, emphasized the importance of delivering overall improved performance within air traffic management and air navigation services in accordance with the objectives of the Single European Sky. The establishment of NEFAB will deepen cooperation at state level as well as enhance cooperation and integration between national supervisory authorities and between air navigation service providers, to the benefit of all airspace users.

The establishment of NEFAB comes as a response to the challenges of the Single European Sky initiative of the European Union and is one of the necessary steps to enable the expected performance improvements within Air Traffic Management in Northern Europe.

NEFAB has potential for significant positive effects related to airspace, service provision, support functions as well as systems. Considerable improvements will be achieved through the optimisation of airspace and as a result of enhanced cooperation between air navigation service providers.

The benefits of NEFAB are incremental and could reach 340 million euros calculated as net present value for the period 2012-2025. The calculation was done as part of a feasibility study delivered by the air navigation service providers. As a result, NEFAB is set to meet the expectations of airspace users, as well as regulatory requirements, under the performance scheme of the Single European Sky.

Estonia, Finland, Latvia and Norway also express their strong willingness and commitment for a continued cooperation with neighbouring States, especially Denmark, Sweden and Iceland, enhancing the development of functionality of airspace.