IATA and Honeywell have not started talks on a possible settlement of the European Commission (EC) complaint filed by the association against the supplier, even as discussions with CFM International over a similar complaint led to a settlement that both sides welcomed.
"We have not moved to the first step on Honeywell yet," IATA General Counsel Jeff Shane told Aviation Daily.
Shane was on the IATA team that worked with representatives from GE Aviation and Safran, joint-venture partners in CFM International, on the CFM complaint. The CFM and Honeywell complaints, filed in March 2016 in support of informal EC Competition Directorate inquiries, were meant to convey the magnitude of the problem from IATA members' point of view, Shane said.
"We just wanted the commission to understand that the industry as a whole treated this as an [important] issue," Shane explained.
Not long after the formal complaint, GE and Safran senior executives approached IATA, starting a series of detailed negotiations that lasted about 18 months. The result: an agreement announced last month that saw IATA drop its formal complaint in exchange for CFM agreeing to abide by a set of "conduct policies" and "implementing measures" hammered out during the talks. GE also plans to abide by the new guidelines.
"The thing I found so remarkable is that what began as an adversarial proceeding ended up being a collaborative effort," Shane said.
The policies into effect in February 2019. One reason for the delay: everyone needs time to digest them.
Because the policies--which are public on CFM's website--were not consolidated in one place prior to the IATA negotiations, quantifying their ramifications is difficult. But both IATA and CFM expressed satisfaction with the outcome.
"We hope that this agreement will be an example for other manufacturers to follow,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s director general and CEO.
CFM said the policies "help to confirm, clarify, and complement" its aftermarket practices.