The aviation sector is important to the UK economy and the government recognises the challenging times it is facing as a result of COVID-19. Through the Department for Transport, Government has kept an open dialogue with the aviation sector and put in place regular structured engagement at both Ministerial and official levels. Recent discussions have included the impact of the proposed 14 day quarantine period.
Home Office and DfT officials jointly held an Implementation Task and Finish Group with the aviation industry on 2 June to discuss implementation of the health measures at the borders and listen to operational impacts and concerns from Industry partners. Easyjet, BA and other major UK airlines dialled in to this meeting. The Home Secretary and DfT Aviation, Maritime and Security Minister held an extensive virtual roundtable discussion on 4 June with various aspects of the aviation and maritime industry on the border health measures due to come into effect. Easyjet, Virgin and Jet2 attended this meeting.
In addition, the International Aviation Taskforce has been established to develop plans for how to restart the aviation sector safely, as well as looking at some of the unique challenges that sector is facing. Both BA and Easyjet are members of the Taskforce’s industry Expert Steering Group. BA were invited to the round table but they turned down the invite for unspecified reasons.