The European Union (EU) has approved Commercial Air Transport (CAT) operations using Single-Engine Turbine aeroplanes at night or in Instrument Meteorological Conditions (SET-IMC) in Europe. The operations took effect on 3 March 2017 with publication in the EU’s Official Journal.

The publication of these rules opens up new markets and stands to improve connectivity across Europe. It marks the end of a 20-year effort by industry and regulators, and Europe is now aligned with the International Civil Aviation Organisation’s (ICAO) standards for CAT operations.

“The EU’s acceptance of CAT operations has been a long-awaited moment for general aviation,” said GAMA President and CEO Pete Bunce. “We are very pleased to see Europe joining other regions in permitting this important form of transport.”

The new regulation is based on rigorous safety analysis, and contains all of the necessary safeguards to facilitate this form of passenger transport. It will facilitate overnight cargo delivery and help provide connectivity to Europe’s most remote regions.

“We applaud the leadership shown by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) in guiding this important safety framework forward, along with many dedicated individuals who helped forge this rule over many years. It will be a welcome development for those underserved by commercial routes to date,” said Bunce.