US embassy cable - 02ROME2322

ITALIAN VIEWS ON THE ADVOCATE GENERAL'S OPINION ON OPEN SKIES CASES

Identifier: 02ROME2322
Wikileaks: View 02ROME2322 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Rome
Created: 2002-05-13 13:16:00
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Tags: EAIR ECON ETRD IT AVIATION FAA
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS ROME 002322 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: EAIR, ECON, ETRD, IT, AVIATION, FAA 
SUBJECT: ITALIAN VIEWS ON THE ADVOCATE GENERAL'S OPINION ON 
OPEN SKIES CASES 
 
 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 02        ROME  02322  131336Z 
REF: STATE 37639 
 
1. (U) SUMMARY: SENIOR ITALIAN TRANSPORT MINISTRY AND CIVIL 
AVIATION AUTHORITY (ENAC) OFFICIALS, AS WELL AS INFORMED 
SECTOR EXPERTS, AGREE THAT THE BILATERAL U.S.-ITALY OPEN 
SKIES AGREEMENT WILL CONTINUE IN EFFECT UNTIL A NEW U.S.-EU 
AGREEMENT IS SIGNED.  ITALIAN OFFICIALS EXPECT TO BE 
INVOLVED IN THE NEGOTIATION OF THE NEW ACCORD, AND 
ANTICIPATE THAT IT WILL TAKE YEARS TO NEGOTIATE.  END 
SUMMARY. 
 
2. (U) ECONOFFS SPOKE WITH SENIOR GOI INTERNATIONAL 
AVIATION OFFICIALS IN THE TRANSPORT MINISTRY AND NATIONAL 
CIVIL AVIATION AUTHORITY (ENAC), AND ANOTHER INFORMED 
AVIATION EXPERT, REGARDING THE OPINION RELEASED BY THE 
EUROPEAN COURT OF JUSTICE (ECJ) JANUARY 31.  THAT OPINION 
RELATED TO THE PENDING COURT CASES FILED IN 1998 BY THE EU 
COMMISSION AGAINST EU MEMBER STATES THAT HAVE CONCLUDED 
OPEN SKIES AGREEMENTS WITH THE UNITED STATES. 
 
3. (SBU) ALESSIO QUARANTA, CHIEF OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS 
OF THE NATIONAL CIVIL AVIATION AUTHORITY (ENAC), TOLD US 
MAY 8 THAT, WHILE THE EC WILL EVENTUALLY GAIN A MANDATE TO 
NEGOTIATE SUCH AGREEMENTS FOR MEMBER STATES, HE DOES NOT 
BELIEVE THAT THIS WILL RENDER INVALID PREVIOUS BILATERAL 
AGREEMENTS.  QUARANTA BELIEVES THAT ANY EC-NEGOTIATED 
AGREEMENT WOULD SIMPLY "COMPLEMENT" PREVIOUS BILATERAL 
AGREEMENTS, AND ALL FREEDOMS CONTAINED WITHIN THEM WOULD BE 
HONORED, EVEN IF NOT INCLUDED IN A LATER EC AGREEMENT. 
QUARANTA BELIEVES THAT MEMBER STATES (OR AT LEAST ITALY) 
WOULD SIT AS OBSERVERS IN ANY EC-LED NEGOTIATIONS WITH THE 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 03        ROME  02322  131336Z 
USG. 
 
4. (SBU) ENAC'S MARINO BARZAGHI, ADVISOR TO THE PRESIDENT, 
AND LUISA TIMPONE, DIRECTOR OF INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS 
TOLD US THAT THEY BELIEVE THE STATUS QUO WILL CONTINUE 
UNTIL THE EU NEGOTIATES A NEW EU-USG AGREEMENT, WHICH IS 
UNLIKELY TO BE SOON. 
 
5. (SBU) TRANSPORT MINISTRY DEPUTY DG FOR AVIATION ALDO 
SANSONE TOLD US THAT, AFTER THE EUROPEAN COURT OF JUSTICE 
DECISION, EU MEMBER STATES WILL DECIDE WITH THE EUROPEAN 
COMMISSION WHETHER EACH STATE SHOULD AGREE TO EXTEND ITS 
BILATERAL OPEN SKIES AGREEMENT TO ALL EU CARRIERS AND 
NATIONS OR WHETHER THE EU WILL BE GIVEN A MANDATE TO 
NEGOTIATE A USG-EU AGREEMENT (WHICH HE THINKS IS FAR MORE 
LIKELY). 
 
6. (SBU) SANSONE STRESSED THAT THE BILATERAL U.S.-ITALY 
OPEN SKIES AGREEMENT WILL CONTINUE IN FORCE UNTIL THIS 
COMMON EU DECISION IS MADE.  THE ITALIAN GOVERNMENT WILL 
CERTAINLY ABIDE BY THIS DECISION, ALTHOUGH ITALY AND THE 
NETHERLANDS ARE NOT INCLUDED IN THE 1998 COURT CASES FILED 
BY THE EU COMMISSION.  SANSONE BELIEVES THE OMISSIONS WERE 
MERELY AN OVERSIGHT. 
 
7. (SBU) SANSONE EXPECTS THAT EU MEMBER STATES WILL 
CONTINUE TO CONCLUDE BILATERAL AGREEMENTS WITH OTHER NON-EU 
MEMBER STATES (FOR EXAMPLE, BETWEEN ITALY AND TUNISIA) WHEN 
THE NEGOTIATED VALUE OF THE AGREEMENT IS NOT HIGH AND 
THEREFORE NOT IN CONFLICT WITH THE INTERESTS OF OTHER EU 
MEMBER STATES. 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
PAGE 04        ROME  02322  131336Z 
 
8.  (SBU) GUIDO VITALI, HEAD OF HUB DEVELOPMENT FOR 
SOCIETA' AEROPORTI DI ROMA, THE ROME AIRPORT HANDLING 
COMPANY AUTHORITY IS CONVINCED THAT THE EU COURT WILL RULE 
AGAINST BILATERAL OPEN SKIES AGREEMENTS AND THAT A MANDATE 
WILL BE GIVEN TO THE EC TO NEGOTIATE FOR THE MEMBER STATES. 
HE EXPECTS THAT, "ALTHOUGH THE U.S. GOVERNMENT ALREADY HAS 
SIGNED AGREEMENTS WITH CARIBBEAN AND APEC COUNTRIES AND MAY 
SIGN A BILATERAL, UNRESTRICTED AGREEMENT WITH CANADA, THE 
U.S. WILL NOT EASILY AGREE TO A SINGLE OPEN SKIES AGREEMENT 
WITH THE EU."  IN THE MEANTIME, WHILE NO U.S.-EU AGREEMENT 
IS IN PLACE, THE BILATERAL OPEN SKIES AGREEMENTS WILL 
CONTINUE IN FORCE.  THE PROCESS, HE EXPLAINS, OF 
INVALIDATING THE EXISTING AGREEMENTS AND GIVING EXCLUSIVE 
COMPETENCE TO THE EC TO NEGOTIATE A SINGLE U.S.-EU 
AGREEMENT, WILL BE LONG.  NOT ONLY IS THE VALUE OF 
NEGOTIATED RIGHTS EXTREMELY HIGH, BUT THE AGREEMENT WILL 
SET A PRECEDENT FOR ALL FUTURE EU AVIATION AGREEMENTS. 
 
SEMBLER 
 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
> 
 2002ROME02322 - Classification: UNCLASSIFIED 


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