The European Commission has warned diplomats that the aviation sector should be prepared for a no-deal Brexit on March 29, reported Politico.

The warning came during a June 12 meeting chaired by Felip Cornelis, the director of aviation for the transport department of the European Commission and attended by representatives of the 27 EU member countries in continental Europe. Cornelis told attendees that they should prepare for impacts on security, market access and customs requirements, among other issues. Politico sourced its report to three unnamed officials who were at the meeting. 

Ahead of Brexit, the European Commission has issued a series of preparedness notices outlining potential ramifications across various economic, technological and regulatory sectors in case the Brexit date passes without a deal. 

The worst-case impact to the aviation sector would be a cessation of all flights between the EU and the U.K. pending the implementation of an air transport agreement between the parties. Currently, because the U.K. is an EU member state, airlines fly uninhibited between the U.K. and the 27 other EU nations. 

Brexit will also require the creation of a new regime of U.K. aviation safety regulations and air passenger rights. 

In an email to Travel Weekly on Tuesday, a European Commission spokesman confirmed that the commission discussed the aviation preparedness notices during a June 12 meeting, but didn't elaborate further. 

In March, the U.K. and EU agreed on a Brexit transition period through the end of 2019, during which the U.K. would continue to abide by EU law but not participate in EU decision-making. However, the transition arrangement has yet to be finalized as debate continues over the future of the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland, among other issues.

Airlines have expressed various levels of concern about Brexit. Ryanair CEO Michael O'Leary has warned of a temporary cessation of UK-EU flights, while International Airlines Group CEO Willie Walsh has been far less alarmist. 

Earlier this month, IATA said that uncertainty over Brexit is a risk factor for the short-term future of airline profitability. Carriers have warned that they need to know the terms of a Brexit agreement six months before it takes effect in order to properly schedule flights.

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