Examination of Witnesses (Questions 296-299)|
18 JANUARY 2006
Q296 Chairman: Good afternoon, gentlemen.
Can I ask you to introduce yourselves for the record, starting
on my left, your right.
Mr Wilshire: I am Roger Wilshire.
I am the Secretary General of the British Air Transport Association
representing UK registered airlines.
Mr Cahn: I am Andrew Cahn, Director
of Government and Industry Affairs at British Airways.
Mr O'Leary: Michael O'Leary, Chief
Executive of Ryanair.
Mr Churchill-Coleman: Richard
Churchill-Coleman, Group Legal Counsel for TUI UK.
Mr Humphreys: Barry Humphreys,
Director of External Affairs and Route Development, Virgin Atlantic
Q297 Chairman: Does anyone have anything
brief to say before we begin questions?
Mr Wilshire: On behalf of UK registered
airlines on the panel this afternoon, I would like to thank you
for inviting us. In a highly regulated and international business,
we believe the CAA is a very professional and very well-respected
aviation regulator, and relationships between the UK airlines
and the regulator are generally quite good. However, the CAA does
face a number of external challenges and we believe needs to change
to adapt to these circumstances, therefore we welcome this inquiry
and the opportunity this afternoon to give further evidence to
Q298 Chairman: Thank you. We are
always delighted to be welcomed by somebody. Mr Cahn, British
Airways says that the CAA was effectively a collection of four
separate regulators. Can you give us some examples where you believe
the present structure has affected the CAA's customers negatively?
Mr Cahn: I do not think the structure
has necessarily affected the customers negatively except that
you have four regulatory areas all under one group. I think it
is open to question whether this is the ideal structure. All we
would suggest is that the time is right for looking again at the
structure, it has not been looked at for 40 years since the Edwards
Review in the 1960s. That is why we welcome the inquiry you are
conducting today because I think you have identified a lacuna
which needs to be looked at.
Q299 Chairman: Are you suggesting
that the CAA's economic and commercial activities ought to be
transferred to a single transport economic regulator for all modes?
Mr Cahn: No, I do not think I
am. I do not believe there is a conflict between the economic
regulation and the safety regulation. I think those two can be
conducted by the same organisation. It is absolutely right, however,
that there is a clear separation between those two because safety
regulation is, of course, always paramount in our business.