Australia's Transport Minister Anthony Albanese stated (21-Apr-2011) Australia signed two historic MoUs with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Sultanate of Oman, enabling direct services between Australia and the Middle East nations. With these MoUs, officials from the Australian Government will continue working with their Saudi and Omani counterparts on finalising permanent air service agreements. Details include:
- Australia-Oman MoU: The MoU permits Omani carriers to operate up to four direct flights a week into and out of Australia’s major gateway airports (Sydney, Melbourne, Perth and Brisbane) as well as up to seven additional weekly services for flights which make a stopover enroute at a regional airport, such as Cairns, Darwin or the Gold Coast. They also have unlimited access to any regional Australian international airport. Australian carriers can now provide up to four weekly flights into and out of Muscat, Salalah or any other Omani city when operating from Australia’s gateway airports, and also enjoy unlimited access to Oman when flying from an Australian regional international airport;
- Australia-Saudi Arabia MoU: The MoU allows Saudi carriers to operate up to four direct services a week into and out of Australia’s gateway airports, as well as up to seven additional flights when operated via a regional international airport. In addition, they can operate unlimited services into and out of any of Australia’s regional international airports. Australian carriers can now operate up to six weekly flights into and out of Jeddah and Riyadh, and unlimited services into and out of Dammam.