Hermes Airports welcomes the decision by the EU Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council and Environment Council to adopt the proposals by the Minister of Transport of Cyprus, Mr. Yiannis Karousos, for the support of air connectivity within the framework of the Fit-for-55 package of the EU.
As the operator of Larnaka and Pafos Airports we fully share the ambition of the EU institutions to decarbonize the aviation industry with actions that include targeted measures for the aviation industry. Hermes Airports has signed the NetZero2050 commitment since 2019, for the achievement of zero carbon emissions and more recently the Toulouse Declaration amongst other 250 European Airports. It is important, however, that the measures which will be applied, will take into consideration the particularities of the island and regional member-states, to avoid the disproportional consequences in the connectivity of countries, such as Cyprus, which will have consequences on tourism and the broader economy.
Within this framework, we consider the decision of the EU Ministers of Transport and Environment to adopt the proposal by the Republic of Cyprus, in the directive of the Fit-For-55 package, to be particularly important. The Minister of Transport, Communications and Works, Mr. Yiannis Karousos, successfully undertook the initiative and made enduring efforts for this outcome. These are crucial additions in the revised Directive, such as the inclusion of the Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF) Allowance Mechanism, through which the increase in cost for the importation of SAFs will be controlled. Equally important for our country, is the special reference in the mandate, that in the case of island member-states smaller than 10,000km2, such as Cyprus, the difference in fuel cost will be covered 100% from a 0,5-billion-euro Fund, as well as the provision of performing a study which will measure the competitiveness consequences for the economy and Cyprus’ connectivity. These initiatives by the Republic of Cyprus are expected to alleviate the effects of the legislative package Fit-For-55, for our country’s connectivity and consequently the tourism sector.
As Hermes Airports we are working closely with the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Works, aiming to achieve the best possible result in the discussions conducted on a European level for the Fit-For-55 package. Taking into consideration the importance of air transport for an island such as Cyprus, we look forward to the total adoption of Cyprus’ proposal in the text of the final Directive which will derive from the negotiations of the Council with the EU Parliament this coming Fall.