IATA on Schiphol flight cuts: “Rushing this process could result in retaliatory international action.”

by | Sep 1, 2023 | Airlines, Airports

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has spoken out about the controversial Schiphol flight cuts arguing they must not proceed under the leadership of a “caretaker government.”

Last week, Bloomberg reported that Royal Schiphol Group plans to cut capacity by eight per cent starting this winter were at an impasse due to legal challenges as well as Prime Minister Mark Rutte’s government moving into caretaker mode ahead of elections in November.

Publishing its response to the proposed cuts yesterday, IATA urged that pushing through the flight cuts now would be “irresponsible on several levels,” citing the below in a robust defense of their stance:

  • It will demonstrate a contempt of the necessary democratic and legal scrutiny required of such a highly irregular and economically damaging proposal.
  • It will place the Netherlands squarely in conflict with its trading partners defending their rights under international agreements and bilateral treaties,
  • It should provoke the EU to defend its own laws which require rigorous application of the Balanced Approach, and
  • It will cause significant harm to the economy and jobs.

Willie Wash, Director General, IATA added:

“Airlines are fully committed to addressing noise issues at airports under a proper Balanced Approach process. It is essential that any decision be postponed until a fully functioning and accountable government with a fresh mandate is in place. This unprecedented and complex proposal can then be considered carefully, with the legal questions settled and the full facts and implications understood and in the public domain, and with sufficient time for the air transport industry to adapt if necessary, when a final decision is known.”

Last month, a World Aviation Festival poll asked whether people thought Schiphol could serve as an example for other airports to follow in decreasing their flight capacity:



Has IATA’s latest response changed how you would vote?


Later this month, Willie Walsh will be giving a keynote interview and speaking on a CEO panel at World Aviation Festival answering the question “What is the future of the global aviation industry as we return to profitability and how will sustainability challenges, digital experiences, macro economics, tech trends and passenger behaviours help shape the outlook for 2024 and beyond?” alongside the CEOs of Pegasus Airlines, IAG, TAP Air Portugal and the President of Emirates. Book your ticket now to hear directly from industry leaders.


For more on Schiphol see: