ASD is pursuing three main missions in Aeronautics:
- Representing and coordinating the European Aerospace Industries towards EU Institutions
ASD Secretariat intervenes on three major fields of activities in Brussels: all questions related to Air Transport (such as but not limited to SES, SESAR, ETS, EASA, REACH, etc); all topics related to Research and Development (New ACARE, SRIA, Framework Programmes, Support to SMEs, etc); and ultimately all initiatives related to Operational Services (standardisation, quality, relations with relevant EU bodies, etc).
ASD actions in Aeronautics are supported by different Commissions and actions are implemented by ASD Secretariat. Specific Commissions exist for Commercial Aircraft, for Engines and for Equipment. Different Sectorial Groups are supporting the interests of Rotorcraft, General and Business Aviation, or even UAS/UAVs.
- Analyzing and supporting global Industry's interests in the framework of the EU Institutions
Analyzing and protecting the interests of the sector, ranging in a wide scope of expressions, is a major priority. ASD takes into account most of the publications (European Commission Communications; Regulations proposals on Intellectual Property Rights, for instance; Calls for Public Paper allowing industry sectors to give their opinions on new EU initiatives) within the framework of decisions taken in Brussels and impacting social, economic, financial, environmental or technical fields within a European perspective. Given the complex process allowing the EU Institutions to elaborate new texts, the sharing of responsibilities between the EU Institutions and the extended time frame, this is a major responsibility and becomes an overarching priority.
Among the most important topics, the follow up of the new ACARE work, the responses to be brought to the environmental issues, the complexity of the REACH regulations, the consequences of current European Commission budget negotiations (Multiannual Financial Framework - MFF) and its possible consequences for the future R&T funding, for instance, are impacting the European Aerospace Industry on a large spectrum and require a constant watch from ASD.
- ASD plays a unique role in supporting and developing specific training for future aeronautics engineers through EU Cooperation
There is an inexorable increase of 'Commercial' students in (as opposed to 'Institutional' engineering students). Training is becoming a major driver in the safe and sustainable development of Aeronautics Industry. It is primarly supported by the growing needs of new engineers, and specific engineerin curricula, such as electronics. Shortage of engineers may become a real problem soon.
More and more, universities develop Research Departments. Most of the time, it is organized around main areas of interest: environmental impacts, machine and man interface, electronics, automation, computer, air transport economy, etc. The international dimension of European Universities is growing significantly. ASD is supporting such development and plays a crucial role.
Our industry is facing unprecedented medium to long-term challenges to its competitiveness: such as the euro-dollar volatility, increasing international competition from new market entrants.
ASD's role in this current economic recession is to defend the interests of its members in the Air Transport sector.
ASD is eager to ensure greater recognition of industry activities in European Programmes and also works towards the adoption and implementation of efficient and balanced regulations, at an EU level.