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Single certificate to tighten EU airport security

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Single certificate to tighten EU airport security

Photo Airport Munich by Politikaner

(BRUSSELS) - Tighter security for Europe's airports is promised as a result of a new EU proposal for a single Europe-wide certification procedure for aviation security screening equipment unveiled on Wednesday.

The EU Commission's proposal for an EU certificate will allow security equipment which has been approved in one EU Member State to also be put on the market in others.

The EU executive says the creation of an EU system of mutual recognition for security equipment will help overcome market fragmentation, strengthen the competitiveness of the EU security industry, boost employment in the sector and ultimately contribute to improving aviation security across Europe.

"Today's proposal, by simplifying and harmonising the rules for the certification of airport screening equipment, will ensure that our high security screening standards are applied at airports everywhere in the EU", said Dimitris Avramopoulos, the EU's Home Affairs Commissioner. "It will also contribute to boosting the competitiveness of the European security industry and improving its capacity to offer solutions enhancing the security of European citizens."

Airport security equipment - used for the screening of persons, cabin baggage and goods in the aviation sector - represents a significant market, with an annual global turnover of €14 billion, €4.2 billion in the EU alone.

Current fragmentation of the EU's internal market for screening equipment, due to national certification procedures, hampers market efficiency and the free movement of goods, says the Commission. It believes that ensuring the free movement of civil aviation security screening equipment within the internal market will increase the global competitiveness of the EU security industry.

Existing EU legislation establishing the technical specifications and performance requirements for aviation security screening equipment at EU airports does not establish a legally binding EU-wide conformity assessment scheme to ensure that the required standards are met at all EU airports. This means that equipment certified in one EU Member State cannot be put on the market in others.

The new proposal establishes a single EU certification system based on a common testing methodology and the issuance of certificates of conformity by manufacturers, which would be valid in all EU Member States, according to the principle of mutual recognition.

Aviation security screening equipment includes the security equipment used for the screening of persons (passengers and airport staff), cabin baggage, hold baggage, supplies, air cargo and mail.

EU legislation on aviation security screening equipment is based on standards developed by the Commission and is continuously adapted to the evolving threat scenarios and risk assessments.

The current EU legislation (Regulation (EC) No 300/2008), which establishes the technical specifications and performance requirements for aviation security screening equipment at EU airports, is not accompanied by a legally binding EU-wide conformity assessment scheme which would ensure that the required standards developed by the Commission are met at all EU airports.

In principle therefore, equipment certified in one EU Member State can currently be put on the market in that Member State only. The current rules provide Member States with the possibility to either recognise certifications of other Member States, require additional testing in order to verify if the equipment meets the requirements prescribed by EU legislation or even to hinder its use on its territory.

Further information

Regulation establishing a Union certification system for aviation security screening equipment

Commission proposal for an EU certification system for aviation security screening equipment: Frequently Asked Questions

Regulation (EC) No 300/2008 on common rules in the field of civil aviation security

Regulation (EC) No 300/2008 implementing acts, in particular the Commission Regulation (EU) No 2015/1998


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