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Transportation Unions Reject EU’s Aviation Trade Liberalization Agenda

By Admin

  Oppose Expansion of ICAO Mandate

ORLANDO, FL—Transportation unions staked out their opposition to continuing attempts by the EU and others to “loosen” U.S. airline ownership and control rules, and rejected the “shockingly ambitious” agenda of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to expand its policy mandate.

“We have rolled out a clear vision on how our government should and shouldn’t expand U.S. aviation trade opportunities,” said Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD) President Edward Wytkind, after convening the winter meeting of the organization’s Executive Committee.  “We are opposed to the EU’s unrelenting attempts to use trade talks with the U.S. for the purpose of forcing damaging reforms to our airline foreign ownership and control rules.”

In a policy statement TTD member unions urged the Obama Administration to continue to reject EU overtures on airline foreign investment reforms, whether they surface during U.S.-EU trade talks on a free trade agreement or in the multilateral setting of an International Services Agreement being negotiated by our government and more than 20 nations.  Transportation union leaders also pushed back attempts by the ICAO Secretariat to expand the organization’s mission into the economic regulatory arena.

“ICAO’s attempts to position itself as a stalking horse for the liberalization of foreign ownership and control rules and the privatization of air traffic control systems should be rejected,” Wytkind added.

The Executive Committee urged the U.S. government to continue its pursuit of only those market-opening aviation trade initiatives that “have a positive impact on the jobs and wages” of U.S. aviation workers. “Decades of unfair trade policy have ravaged workers in many U.S. industries, and we are committed to ensuring that liberalized aviation trade does not have the same result for U.S. aviation employees,” the TTD statement said.


CONTACT: Jennifer Michels,, 202.628.9262, 703.395-2195

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