1Secretary of State’s general duty
(1)The Secretary of State must exercise his functions under this Chapter so as to maintain a high standard of safety in the provision of air traffic services; and that duty is to have priority over the application of subsections (2) to (5).
(2)The Secretary of State must exercise his functions under this Chapter in the manner he thinks best calculated—
(a)to further the interests of operators and owners of aircraft, owners and managers of aerodromes, persons travelling in aircraft and persons with rights in property carried in them;
(b)to promote efficiency and economy on the part of licence holders;
(c)to secure that licence holders will not find it unduly difficult to finance activities authorised by their licences.
(3)The only interests to be considered under subsection (2)(a) are interests regarding the range, availability, continuity, cost and quality of air traffic services.
(4)The reference in subsection (2)(a) to furthering interests includes a reference to furthering them (where the Secretary of State thinks it appropriate) by promoting competition in the provision of air traffic services.
(5)If in a particular case there is a conflict in the application of the provisions of subsections (2) to (4), in relation to that case the Secretary of State must apply them in the manner he thinks is reasonable having regard to them as a whole.
(6)The Secretary of State must exercise his functions under this Chapter so as to impose on licence holders the minimum restrictions which are consistent with the exercise of those functions.
(7)This section does not apply to the exercise of the Secretary of State’s functions under section 38.