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Photo: Turkmenistan Airlines

Lufthansa consultancy backs banned airline

The Central Asian carrier Turkmenistan Airlines was banned from flying to the EU last week, stranding thousands of passengers.

Lufthansa Consulting is supporting Turkmenistan Airlines, which was banned last week from flying in the European Union, to help it “access compliance to international air safety standards”.

Turkmenistan’s flag carrier hopes the move will drive action to raise its safety standards to meet EU requirements.

An independent subsidiary of Lufthansa Group, Lufthansa Consulting is an international aviation consultancy for airlines, airports and related industries.

The Turkmen airline has commissioned the consultants to help it to raise its performance in terms of the Third Country Operators EU safety authorisations for foreign air operators, otherwise known as EASA TCO.

The airline admits it “recently experienced difficulties” in satisfying the relevant safety requirements, and Lufthansa Consulting claims the carrier is “taking matters in this regard very seriously”.

The operator says it is aware of the need for immediate action and has decided to cooperate with the German aviation experts to review the situation and develop a corrective action plan.

Lufthansa Consulting itself says it has the relevant “extensive experience” with issues of flight safety, and in this project it aims to “develop an overall customised and effective action scheme in line with the analysed EASA TCO requirements and findings”.

Stranded passengers
Turkmenistan Airlines has routes to the UK, Germany and France but it was abruptly banned from flying to the EU on February 4, leaving thousands of passengers stranded abroad, according to the BBC.

This was because the EASA revoked its Third Country Operator Certificate, due to doubts as to whether it complies with international air safety standards.

The EU maintains a ‘blacklist’ of airlines not authorised to fly in Europe, which currently includes over 100 airlines around the world. Of these, the vast majority are from Africa.

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