Belfast Telegraph

UK airline passengers 'still want benefits of EU aviation market'

Airline passengers want to continue to benefit from the single EU aviation market despite the UK's Brexit vote, the boss of easyJet said.

The no-frills carrier's chief executive Carolyn McCall said "nothing will change overnight", and insisted the aviation industry "knows how to overcome challenges".

Speaking in Brussels at a summit held by lobby group Airlines for Europe (A4E) - whose members include easyJet, Ryanair and British Airways' parent company IAG - Ms McCall said: "A4E believes that for consumers, the most important thing is that they continue to receive the benefit of the current liberalised and deregulated aviation market."

Several non-EU member countries are part of the European Common Aviation Area in return for compliance with safety rules and economic co-operation.

EasyJet shares fell 19% at one stage on Monday after the firm said it will take a £28 million hit following two months of turbulence and warned that Brexit would have a negative impact on the airline.

It flagged strikes in France in May and June and severe weather and congestion issues at Gatwick leading to more than a thousand cancellations, with the EgyptAir tragedy also denting demand.

On Brexit, easyJet said that it anticipates economic and consumer uncertainty this summer and, as a result, revenue in the second half of the year will be down by "at least a mid-single digit percentage".

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