Poland's air navigation agency may be among Europe's best

Polish airspace is among the biggest in Europe, and the Polish Air Navigation Services Agency (PANSA) should be one of the key players in managing European air traffic, Janusz Janiszewski, the acting CEO of PANSA, has told PAP.

Janiszewski was appointed on July 10 and said he first met with the almost 2,000-strong staff and the agency's social partners, because "every employee must understand PANSA's vision, strategy and the challenges facing the agency."

"For me," the official added, "PANSA means people plus technology and the place where we must be in the future."

The current acting CEO has worked his way up the agency from apprentice traffic controller, and says he knows the problems of the traffic control operating room and how to solve them. Thus, despite strikes and tensions in the past, Janiszewski hopes that "thanks to dialogue and an understanding of the process, we will be able to solve the problems which come up."

In the future, Janiszewski wants to put PANSA "in its rightful place," that is, as "one of the key service providers in managing European air traffic." This is because of Poland having one of the biggest airspaces in Europe, as well as being a fast-growing air market and a frontier country of NATO and the European Union.

"Even the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has confirmed Poland's potential," PANSA's CEO said, "so it would be a sin not to take advantage of it."

Janiszewski added that air traffic above Poland has grown by around 11 percent, while punctuality has improved noticeably over the last decade, with delay per flight dropping from 2,5 minutes to 0,11 of a minute per flight. Passengers are sometimes still kept waiting for their flights, the PANSA chief conceded, even for hours, so a joint effort from all concerned (traffic controllers, the airport, handling agents, the airways) is required to improve the situation.

Nevertheless, "this does not change our priority of flying the passenger safely from point A to point B," Janiszewski concluded.