The initiative paves way for increasing air connectivity across nearly 40 countries.
The initiative paves way for increasing air connectivity across nearly 40 countries.

ASEAN, EU air transport pact generates optimism and confidence: AAPA

ANI | Updated: Jun 08, 2021 12:22 IST

Kuala Lumpur [Malaysia], June 8 (ANI): The Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) on Tuesday welcomed the conclusion of negotiations on a comprehensive air transport agreement between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the European Union (EU).
It is the world's first bloc-to-bloc air transport agreement. Once formalised, airlines of the combined 37 member-states -- 10 of them from Southeast Asia -- can fly any number of non-stop flights between both regions.
Airlines also will be able to fly up to 14 weekly passenger services and any number of cargo services via and beyond to any third country.
"This important development comes at a critical moment for airlines from both regions, paving the way for increasing air connectivity across nearly 40 countries," said AAPA.
The agreement stems from years of intense negotiations complicated in part by how the European Union is structured.

Air rights are a sensitive subject to negotiate, especially since many airlines are considered national carriers enjoying government support and subsidies.
"AAPA applauds the foresight shown by ASEAN and EU regulators at a crucial time during a global health pandemic with the far-reaching agreement creating optimism and confidence for the air transport industry," it said.
"The agreement also provides a valuable framework for ASEAN and the EU to collaborate in areas such as aviation safety, air traffic management, consumer protection as well as environmental and social issues."
The EU is ASEAN's third largest source of investment and third largest trading partner, with USD10.5 billion of foreign direct investment inflows and USD226.2 billion of trade in goods in 2020.
The AAPA permanent secretariat is headquartered in Kuala Lumpur with international representation in Brussels and Washington DC.
Collectively, the region's airlines carry 1,623 million passengers and 23 million tonnes of cargo, representing over one-third of global passenger and air cargo traffic, and thus play a leading role in the ongoing development of global aviation. (ANI)