The European airport industry is meeting in Athens this week for the Annual Congress & General Assembly of ACI EUROPE, hosted by Athens International Airport* (AIA). Taking place on 20 to 22 June, the event brings together more than 300 airport executives, representatives from the EU institutions, the Greek authorities, and business partners – including airlines, ground handlers, retailers and security companies, to debate current and future trends in air transport. The event host, Athens International Airport itself celebrates 15 years of operation this year.
The conference’s theme “There is nothing permanent except change – towards a radical remodeling of passenger and airline customer relationships” will focus on the evolving interactions between airport operators and their customers.
This year’s Annual Congress & General Assembly will also be the opportunity to mark the 25th anniversary of ACI. Since 1991, Airports Council International has established itself as the authoritative and trusted voice for the World’s airports. Here in Europe, ACI EUROPE acts as a unique centre of expertise and influence – always looking for new ways to add value for its members and focused on promoting a wider understanding of challenges facing civil aviation.
Being firmly committed to a responsible, progressive and sustainable agenda, ACI EUROPE has over the last 10 years taken a leadership position on an increasing number of industry and societal issues of strategic relevance.
• The fight against Climate Change with Airport Carbon Accreditation – a robust and widely praised certification programme1, now established as the global standard for carbon management at airports and achieving carbon reductions year after year since 2009. Last December at COP 21, ACI EUROPE also reconfirmed its vision for a carbon neutral airport industry by formally committing to get 50 European airports becoming carbon neutral by 2030.
• The advancement of consumer interest with its Water @ Airports initiative2, ACI EUROPE’s Guidelines on Passenger Experience at European Airports or its recent calls for a consumer focused & market driven regulations – notably on airport charges.
• The promotion of air connectivity and its wider economic benefits for communities and businesses across Europe – through in-depth analysis of the dynamics of air connectivity3 and calls for Open Skies4, jointly with the European Travel Commission (ETC).
• The provision of expertise and advice to regulators on all matters relating to aviation security.
Airport industry prepares to mark a quarter century of progress
Olivier Jankovec, Director General of ACI EUROPE, commented: “We are very excited to celebrate 25 years of service and leadership to Europe’s airports in Athens next week. The fact that ACI EUROPE has grown its membership from 406 airports back in 2006 to more than 500 today reflects our ability to bring together and serve the entire airport industry – from the mega hubs to the very small regional airports. Europe’s airports have gone through tremendous changes over these past 25 years, transforming into businesses in their own right and becoming not just BtoB but also BtoC businesses. As this progress continues in the years to come, we will keep raising the profile of airports as consumer-focused & sustainable businesses connecting Europe to the wider World.”
ACI EUROPE is the European region of Airports Council International (ACI), the only worldwide professional association of airport operators. ACI EUROPE represents close to 500 airports in 45 European countries. In 2014, our member airports handled over 90% of commercial air traffic in Europe, welcoming more than 1.8 billion passengers, 18.4 million tonnes of freight and 21.2 million aircraft movements. These airports contribute to the employment of 12.3 million people, generating €675 billion each year (4.1%) of GDP in Europe.