IATA lodges a complaint before the Commission against abuses of original aviation equipment makers

In October 2015 the European Commission sent questionnaires to several aviation industry stakeholders, including International Air Transport Association (IATA), regarding a preliminary investigation into alleged abuses of dominant positions by the few manufacturers of aviation equipment, which are allegedly accused of forcing airlines to sign restrictive agreements concerning the aftermarket for repairs, including spare parts and services.

IATA, in its role of global trade association for airlines, has announced that it will represent their interests by becoming a complainant in the Commission’s investigation. Tony Tyler, Director General and CEO, said that various airlines complained about the lack of flexibility in negotiations for aftermarket services. He added that IATA’s intervention is not aimed at obtaining any forms of compensation for past conduct. It is, instead, aimed at the future, with the purpose of creating a more open aftermarket where IATA’s members will be able to negotiate contract terms more effectively.

Although a formal investigation has not been opened by the Commission yet, the research and collection of information is ongoing also considering that the choice for certain kinds of airplane equipment, including those most used in the aviation industry, is very limited or, in some cases, inexistent. This means that airlines have no choice but to sign repair, maintenance and other services agreements with the original maker of the said equipment.