With unlimited flight services ‘open sky’ pact may help reduce fares

With unlimited flight services ‘open sky’ pact may help reduce fares

India and Japan recently agreed to an ‘open sky’ arrangement under which the airlines of both countries can operate an unlimited number of flights. The agreement was signed after Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe held strategic discussions on a wide range of issues.

The move is set to increase air travel and tourism between the two countries. An official release said India and Japan exchanged RoD (Record of Discussions) on civil aviation cooperation with respect to open sky.  The agreement was signed in accordance with the National Civil Aviation Policy, 2016. It NACP permits the government to enter into an ‘open sky’ air services agreement on a reciprocal basis with SAARC nations as well as countries with territory located entirely beyond a 5,000 km radius from New Delhi.

The Ministry of External Affairs issued a statement saying, “The two Prime ministers welcomed the expansion of civil aviation connectivity between India and Japan, utilising the recently updated open sky policies between the two countries.”

Travel portal Yatra.com said the free movement of airlines between the two countries will also lead to a reduction in the price of air tickets. Japanese carriers All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines and Indian carriers Air India and Jet Airways are the airlines that fly between the two countries. Significantly, last week, full-service carrier Vistara had announced plans to enter into a code share partnership with Japan Airlines by next year.

Vistara is also likely to unveil plans for international operations soon and Japan is on the radar, it had said. Last year, India had signed an open sky agreement with Greece, Jamaica, Guyana, Czech Republic, Finland, Spain and Sri Lanka. India also signed a bilateral open sky agreement with the US in 2005. In 2003, India had signed an open sky agreement with the 10-member Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN).


News Source: www.newindianexpress.com

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