Application of competition law to air traffic services

CAA policy document (22 pages, PDF) on the application of competition law to air traffic services. The CAA has competition law enforcement powers under the Competition Act 1998 in respect of air traffic services but not in respect of airport services or airlines.

The document restates advice received by the CAA and reported in a 2004 consultation (15 pages, PDF) that, for the purposes of competition law, the provision of en route and aerodrome air traffic services by NATS may not be an economic activity pursued by an undertaking, because it is "connected by its nature, aims and the rules to which it is subject with the exercise of powers which are typically or necessarily those of a public authority". But in the light of consultation responses the CAA does not endorse this advice and does not "come to a definitive view on this question which can only be determined by the courts".

Filed under CAA, Guidance.

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