Air traffic control in Mallorca is affected by what happens in Marseille. | Archive

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Air traffic controllers in Marseille are due to take further strike action this summer, prompting the tourism industry in Mallorca and the Balearics to once more call for change in order to reduce the power that Marseille has for air traffic.

The Marseille centre's control extends south towards Algeria. This is for historical reasons - the Second World War. France wanted its airspace to be as close as possible to Algeria, and it remains the case, therefore, that the reach is as far as Mallorca and Sardinia.

The tourism industry in the Balearics says that this space should be controlled by Spain - and by the control centres in Barcelona and Palma in particular. The Spanish government is being asked to put pressure on Brussels to eliminate the power of the Marseille control centre and enable more alternative routes. If Marseille calls a stoppage or a strike, airlines are forced to re-route, and if the Bordeaux control centre takes industrial action at the same time, there can be real problems for air traffic.