On June 21, 2022, the Court of Justice of the EU (“CJEU”) decided that that the Passenger Name Record (“PNR”) Directive’s provisions providing for the processing of PNR data by competent Member State authorities are compatible with the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights (“Charter”). However, the CJEU also decided that the PNR Directive limits the way in which Member State laws transpose some of its provisions, particularly in relation to the collection of passenger information for intra-EU flights. Its decision will require Belgium to amend its law transposing the PNR Directive, mainly in relation to the PNR data competent authorities may receive and how they can process this data. It is likely to indirectly impact air carriers and tour operators operating in Belgium, as it will reduce the amount of data they need to share with competent authorities under such a revised legal framework.
The CJEU decision also considers, as well, Member State laws transposing (1) the Council Directive 2004/82/EC on the obligation of carriers to communicate passenger data (API Directive) and (2) Directive 2010/65/EU on reporting formalities for ships arriving in and/or departing from ports of the Member States.
The case was lodged on October 31, 2019, by the non-profit organization Ligue des Droits Humainsbefore the Belgian courts in relation to the Belgian law transposing the PNR and API Directives. The Belgian Constitutional Court referred certain questions to the CJEU.