AESA celebrates its 15 years of history at the service of the aeronautical sector and society

Friday, November 17, 2023


Madrid, 17 November 2023 (ESA)

The Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda (MITMA) and the main companies in the aeronautical sector of Spain have accompanied the State Aviation Safety Agency (AESA) in the event of celebration of its 15 years of history.

The Minister of Transport, Mobility and the Urban Agenda in office, Raquel Sánchez, has inaugurated the event, which has brought together representatives of the industry to take stock of the role of AESA since its creation. During her speech, the head of Mitma congratulated the Agency for having “more than fulfilled” its initial mission in its first fifteen years of life and stressed that it is ready to move forward in the new challenges: sustainability and noise reduction.

“The creation of AESA in 2008 has brought fifteen years of progress for aviation safety in our country,” said the minister before highlighting her great work the prevention and inspection of the least strong links in the chain to mitigate and eliminate any risk.

“In the future, which is already present, the Agency will continue to guide the progress of commercial aviation in Spain,” said Raquel Sánchez, who has taken the opportunity to recall the tragedy of Spanair, which led to the creation of the agency to prevent such accidents from happening.

As the minister pointed out, the aviation of the immediate future will be cleaner and less noisy, will preserve biodiversity and promote the circular economy. “We are already seeing the technological improvements that will make it possible, both in the design of more efficient aircraft and engines, and in the use of more sustainable fuels, which are only the first step towards electrification and the generalisation of hydrogen as an energy source,” he said.

Together with the minister, David Benito, president of AESA and director general of Civil Aviation (DGAC), and Montserrat Mestres, director of AESA, have made the opening.

The closing of the event was given by David Lucas, Secretary of State for Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda, who highlighted the work of the Agency “its collaborative approach with industry, users and other international authorities, which ensures that safety policies evolve at the pace of the rapid transformation of the aeronautical sector”.

Ensuring security

Since its inception, the Agency has continuously adapted to the needs of society and air transport, while the responsibilities we have with society and the aviation industry have grown exponentially. We owe it to the citizens and the organisations. Our Agency prides itself on being synonymous with security, taking the utmost commitment to this mission", said Montserrat Mestres during his speech.

The State Aviation Safety Agency was established on 20 October 2008 with the aim of ensuring compliance with civil aviation standards throughout Spain’s aeronautical activity.

In 2022, it received revenue of EUR 87.3 million, counting for 2023, with a budget of EUR 83.7 million. In addition, since 2012, the Agency has had a self-financing scheme.

It currently has more than 350 professionals spread between its headquarters in Madrid and its seven Flight Security Offices (OSV), located at the airports of Madrid, Seville, Valencia, Sabadell (Barcelona), Cuatro Vientos (Madrid), Palma de Mallorca and Gran Canaria.

In these 15 years, important milestones have been achieved for national aviation, such as the improvement in the safety of air work with Royal Decree 750/2014, the certification of the entire national airport network, the creation of the State Operational Safety Program (PESO) or the certification of EASA as an alternative dispute resolution entity to guarantee the rights of passengers. In addition, the rise of new forms of air mobility and the integration of these aircraft, such as drones, is marking a before and after in the development of a regulation in which we continue to work together.

In this context, representatives of organisations of the aviation industry have led two round tables where the evolution of operational safety has been discussed since the creation of AESA, with the participation of Aena, Iberia, ataire and SAERCO; and the new horizon of air mobility, with the presence of ENAIRE, AIRBUS, the Polytechnic University of Valencia, ALA and RACE.

Thus, ENAIRE’s general director, Enrique Maurer, has participated in the panel 'Present and future of air mobility. AESA challenges for the next 15 years’. During his speech he stressed that ENAIRE has the best Security Management System at European level, as endorsed by the EOSM indicator, which has been improving to reach a maximum of 100 for three consecutive years.

Towards a sustainable and innovative industry

With the learning of these 15 years, AESA is ready to face the challenges of the future. The agency is committed to promoting innovative and sustainable aviation, guaranteeing the highest standards of aviation safety that characterise our country.

As a regulatory body, EASA’s roadmap involves establishing industry-consistent regulations that facilitate the deployment of new technologies while ensuring the sustainability of the sector.

In her farewell words, the director of the Agency wanted to thank all the actors who have accompanied AESA in its history: airlines, associations, airport managers, air navigation service providers or training schools. But above all, to all the people who form and have been part of the legacy of the Agency, who, without them, could not have reached the point of progress and safety currently enjoyed by Spanish aviation.


About EASA

AESA is the State body, attached to the State Secretariat for Transport of the Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda, which ensures that civil aviation standards are met in the aeronautical activity of Spain.

The Agency has the tasks of Supervision, Inspection and Management of Air Transport, Air Navigation and Airport Safety. It assesses the risks to transport safety and has the power to sanction infringements of civil aviation rules.