This own initiative opinion follows the following objectives:
draw the attention to the key challenges faced by regional airports as a result of the COVID-19 crisis but alsoin the long term;
highlight the investment needs of regional airports, with particular consideration of safety and security issues as well as economic needs and environmental standards;
highlight the potential of regional airports for the implementation of the Green Deal, in particular by creating multimodal hubs, interconnections and interoperability with sustainable transport system in Europe, especially rail;
thoroughly assess the extent of possible support for regional airports under the national Recovery and Resilience Plans;
come forward with proposals on the extent to which state aid provisions applicable to regional airports could be reviewed as part of the revision of state aid rules announced in the Commission's Work Programme 2021.
Through its preparation (bilateral meetings with representatives of the EU institutions (European Commission, European Parliament, Portuguese Presidency) and aviation stakeholders,written stakeholder consultation, media coverage, etc), the opinion is already drawing the attention on the key challenges faced by regional airports, in the short and long term, and strategies to be explored.