Letter from KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
Thank you for giving us the opportunity to comment
on the Commission proposals to extend powers to apply to existing
competition provisions to aviation services between the European
Community and third countries (8582/97 (Com(97) 218)).
Instead of answering the detailed questions
of the Sub-Committee we would rather like to give you some general
Over the years the European Commission Directorate-General
IV-Competition has tried to obtain the competence to deal directly
under the Articles 85 and 86 of the EC Treaty with competition
issues in relation to third countries.
KLM is very much in favour of arranging aeropolitical
relations with third countries at a Community level. However,
in our opinion, such arrangements could only be based on EU aviation
policy formulated by the Council under Article 84 of the Treaty.
The application of competition law to such external
relations is only part of the total regulatory regime that would
be created after successful Community negotiations with third
Consequently, we feel that extension of the
Commission's power to apply EU competition law to external aviation
relations should only be created in conjunction with an overall
EU external aviation policy and not in isolation.
R C van der Maaten
Vice President Public Affairs
19 June 1998