The European Commission is currently developing ‘A Drone Strategy 2.0 for a smart and sustainable unmanned aircraft eco-system in Europe’, for presentation in 2022. The initiative was announced in the ‘Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy’ and in the ’Action plan on synergies between civil, defence and space industries’, which launched a ‘Drones Technologies Flagship’.
Building on the policies and regulatory framework already in place at EU level in this area, this public consultation aims to gather information and feedback from the most relevant stakeholders and the wider public as to how EU Drone Policy can contribute to new forms of sustainable aerial services and transport. It should help to identify the steps that could be taken to support the wider use of drones, and address concerns to ensure the safe, efficient and sustainable development of a drone eco-system. It will also take stock of the initial implementation of the EU regulatory framework and identify synergies between civil, defence and space industries.
The EU drone market is projected to grow rapidly over the coming years, with drone services and operations expected to outnumber those of manned aircraft. With a first regulatory framework for drones already in place, it is now important to foster the uptake of the technology in Europe and, in particular, to ensure public acceptance of drones by tackling issues related to environmental protection, safety, security and privacy.