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Friday, July 23, 2010

Is Singapore Airlines Coming To Barbados?

"Singapore has concluded open skies agreements (OSAs) with Barbados, Brazil, Jamaica and Rwanda, at the International Civil Aviation Organization Air Services Negotiation Conference 2010 (ICAN 2010), held recently in Jamaica.

ICAN 2010 offers a central meeting place for air services officials from various countries to meet and conduct bilateral air services negotiations. The OSAs with Barbados and Jamaica are the first between Singapore and the Caribbean community. The Singapore-Brazil OSA comes on the back of the Singapore-Peru OSA, which was concluded in 2009 together with the establishment of Air Services Agreements with Colombia and Ecuador. The OSA with Rwanda is Singapore’s second with an African country, after the Singapore-Zambia OSA that was concluded in 2008.

Without restrictions on capacity, frequency or routing, OSAs allow carriers the full flexibility to introduce services when market opportunities arise. Carriers are also able to tap on traffic from and to third countries to improve the commercial viability of their operations. Direct air links with Singapore will allow businesses in Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbeans to access more markets by tapping on Singapore’s excellent connectivity to the Asia Pacific region. This will reinforce the growing people and trade flows between these regions and the Asia Pacific. The establishment of liberal air services frameworks between Singapore and more countries in Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbeans pave the way for such benefits.

There are currently no direct flight connections between Singapore and Latin America or the Caribbeans. In Africa, Singapore Airlines operates passenger services to Egypt and South Africa, while Singapore Airlines Cargo operates cargo services to Kenya and South Africa.

Apart from sealing OSAs with the four countries at ICAN 2010, Singapore and Fiji also concluded an open skies framework for cargo services and expanded traffic rights entitlements for passenger operations between and beyond both countries.  Yap Ong Heng, Director-General of the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore welcomed the recent developments, saying, “airlines operate in a challenging environment with dynamic markets. It is thus critical for countries to proactively put in place air services frameworks that enable airlines the commercial freedom to respond to market opportunities.""
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