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EU decision on flight ban vs Cebu Pacific out this year

Camille Diola - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - The European Union may come out with a decision on Cebu Pacific flight's petition to be plucked out from the list of banned airlines within the first half of 2014, an EU official said Monday.

Speaking with the Philippine Flight Network, EU political counselor to the Philippines Julian Vassallo said the 28-member bloc is still reviewing the budget airline's plea to be removed from the blacklist.

"We are currently helping Cebu Pacific get off the list of EU banned airlines. I expect a decision in the first half of 2014," Vassallo said.

Last year, the EU lifted the ban on the Philippine Airlines after the flag carrier met safety standards. The airline was the first country to be allowed back to European skies after all Philippine carriers were blacklisted in 2010.

"We are happy now that people from both Europe and the Philippines can experience ease of travel with direct flights after more than a decade," Vassallo said.

All other Philippine-based airlines remain banned from flying over Europe.

Read: Philippines out of EU blacklist

Siim Kallas, European Commission (EC) vice president for transport, had said that the list includes airlines and countries that need to implement significant improvements in terms of aviation and safety.

“Today we confirmed our willingness to remove countries and airlines from the list if they show real commitment and capacity to implement international safety standards in a sustainable manner,” Kallas said.

AIRLINES CEBU PACIFIC EUROPE AND THE PHILIPPINES EUROPEAN COMMISSION EUROPEAN UNION KALLAS PHILIPPINE AIRLINES PHILIPPINE FLIGHT NETWORK PHILIPPINES JULIAN VASSALLO SIIM KALLAS VASSALLO
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