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Managing Partner, Suprema Lex
Junior Lawyer, Suprema Lex
The Transportation Law: All’s Not Lost
Ukraine is located in the middle of Europe and lies between the Black Sea and the Carpathian Mountains. Ukraine borders countries like Romania, Moldavia, Belarus, Russia, Poland, Slovakia and Hungary. Nowadays, air transportation plays an important role in the country’s international transport, especially in the west, east and south, and within the national transport network, particularly in the west-east direction. The comfort of this type of transport determines its further development as a priority.
Basis of Ukrainian Transportation Law
Administrative facilities in the field of aviation transport include: airports and other ground infrastructure, air navigation service — maintenance of aircraft in Ukraine’s airspace, airline (operators), aircraft crews.
Relations associated with transport activities are regulated, by the Constitution of Ukraine, Civil and Commercial Codes, On Transport Act of Ukraine of 10 November 1994, Laws of Ukraine on May 15, 1996, On the Transit of Goods Law of Ukraine of 20 October 1999, On the Functioning of the Single Transport System in the Special Period Law of Ukraine of 20 October 1998,
On the Freight Forwarding Activities Law of Ukraine of 1 July 2004, Air Code of Ukraine of 19 May 2011. The rules for transportation of goods, acting for various kinds of transport and all kinds of goods are important among other acts of Ukrainian transport legislation.
To Be Done
The main document covering global aviation is the Chicago Convention, as adopted by the founding states of ICAO — the International Civil Aviation Organization in December 1944. This document is a kind of “Bible” for the operations of all aviation countries. It establishes the principles of the activities of airlines, airports, all participants of the air transport market.
All other international instruments that were adopted later only supplement the provisions of the Chicago Convention, specify the individual paragraphs and articles, provide clarification for its clear interpretation and interpretation by all members of the world aviation community
Ukrainian legislation on aviation law was developed in accordance with international standards, but to some extent it reflects only the beginning of market reforms in Ukraine. The main feature of aviation law in Ukraine is that acts of law are mainly not directly applicable, but based on subordinate legislation. However, due to Ukrainian aviation legislation being based on international principles and acts it, in the main, meets EU requirements. The main goals of the Ukrainian aviation transport industry today are building modern airports on the basis of old airports in Ukraine’s regions.
The current state of development of air transport in Ukraine needs a modernized system of legal regulation. It should be noted that the process of such regulation takes place in several directions:
— legal regulation of the financial and economic activity of aviation enterprises;
— legal regulation of relations between subjects of aviation activity,
— technical regulation of requirements for aviation engineering and ground infrastructure;
— Legal regulation of requirements of aviation personnel regarding their level of qualification, work experience and state of health, etc.
Since the activity of aviation transport is different, or not in the greatest application of uniform international requirements, processes of legal regulation are taking place simultaneously both at international and national levels.
Unfortunately, the work aimed at adapting national normative legal acts to European standards is going ahead very slowly. The situation with the legal and regulatory framework for the operation of aviation enterprises in Ukraine has a significant impact on the level of flight safety, which is still at an inappropriate level.
Leading domestic aviation carriers do not meet the modern principles and requirements of the world’s aviation community, as a result of which there is low competitiveness on the part of our companies in the air transport market in Ukraine and in the world as a whole.
Thus, the system of safety oversight of flights in Ukraine is not recognized internationally, in the context of the immediate “opening of the sky” Ukrainian carriers are not ready to compete on an equal footing with foreign airlines, which are increasing their presence on the country’s market. Strict legal regulation requires a relationship in the field of training and certification of aviation personnel.
The current Air Code of Ukraine, adopted in the early years of independence, is not capable of regulating relations between the subjects of the aviation industry in modern economic conditions. Regulatory acts developed on the basis of the Air Code of Ukraine are much better suited to the task of regulation of relations in the aviation sector, but also have certain flaws, which in turn impede the development of aviation in Ukraine
The Ukrainian aviation authorities, together with experts of the Eurocontrol (EC), have developed the passport of the “Ensuring safety of flights in Ukraine” project, the commencement of which began in January 2007 and became the first project in Ukraine to be implemented within the framework of technical and expert assistance under the European Union’s TWINNING program.
Furthermore, the Ukrainian Government is working on the establishment of collaborative airspace with EU, based on free access to the air carriage market, equal competitive conditions and collaborative rules, especially in the areas of aviation safety, air traffic management, environmental protection and industrial social norms, development of cooperation between air manufacturing complexes of the EU and Ukraine.
For the moment the issue of airlines using licensing that has to be regulated by the State Aviation Service of Ukraine remains unregulated.
Instead of a Conclusion
So, for the comfort transportation and for business in Ukraine, foreign investors have to acknowledge that Ukrainian transport legislation is now developing but does not fully correspond with EU standards.
There is the hope that the Ukrainian authority will regard as a priority task not only the adoption of a new regulatory framework for air transport activities, but for professional training of personnel, organization and performance of flights and airworthiness. If this is done and an aircraft corporate culture is formed then in the near future Ukraine could get to be known as the heart of Europe not only by location but as one of the largest transport arteries on the planet.