NCAA to Hold Talks with EU over Medview Ban

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Chinedu Eze
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) on Tuesday announced that it would hold high level talks with the European Union Air Safety Committee (ASC) of the European Commission (EC) this week to resolve all discrepancies that would lead to lifting of the ban on Medview Airline to operate Nigerian registered aircraft.

Currently, the airline operates to London with aircraft on wet lease from a European organisation.
According to NCAA, the planned talk is part of a series of engagements with the European Commission (EC) in the aftermath of a failed application by Medview Airlines for a Third Country Operator Authorisation to the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).

The regulatory authority explained that the application failed during the verification of documents submitted by the airline which were found to be non-compliant with Regulation (EC) No 2111/2005 and therefore could not qualify for approval.
“The NCAA thereafter received the notification of non-compliance through the office of the Nigerian Mission to International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

“Upon receipt of notification the Director General, NCAA, Capt. Muhtar Usman, met with senior officials of European Commission in Gaborone, Botswana, during the Regional Safety Oversight Organisation conference in February of this year. During this meeting, extensive discussions were held with a view to resolving the matter,” NCAA said in a statement signed by the General Manager, Public Affairs, Sam Adurogboye.

To resolve this problem, NCAA said it engaged Medview Airlines to straighten out issues arising from the failed application to the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).
“However, the EU Air Safety Committee invited NCAA and Medview for a tripartite meeting in Brussels on April 25 to 26, 2017. After the deliberations, the European Commission (EU) with the full support of the EU Air Safety Committee unanimously decided to ban Medview Airlines.

“This ban is in accordance with the common criteria set out in the Annex to Regulation (EC) No 2111/2005.Therefore, the union’s list of air carriers which are subject to an operating ban within the union should be amended to include Medview Airlines in Annex A to Regulation (EC) No 474/2006.The ban will take effect a day after it is published in an official journal,” the statement said.

The agency said the commission expressed its readiness to reconsider the inclusion of Medview Airlines on the EU Air Safety List as soon as all issues of non-compliance are resolved with EASA.
It noted that as part of the s efforts to arrive at a resolution and lifting of the ban, NCAA would conduct a full-scale audit of Medview Airlines’ operations.

“The result would therefore determine further actions and engagements by the Regulatory Authority,” NCAA said.
Meanwhile, Medview will continue to operate to London Gatwick with the leased Boeing B777 and Boeing Boeing B747 until the matter is resolved and the ban is lifted so that it could fly to Europe with Nigerian registered aircraft.