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EU–US 'Open Skies' negotiations Nov-2010 target; EU wants foreign ownership normalised

11-Mar-2010 9:12 AM

European Commission stated it aims to conclude the second stage of negotiations on the EU-US Air Services Agreement before Nov-2010. The negotiations are aimed at building on the existing first stage Air Services Agreement ('Open Skies'), which has been in place since 30-Mar-2008. Europe believes that the first stage agreement could be improved in a number of areas. In particular, the second stage agreement is a "significant opportunity" for both sides to normalise the rules on airline investment thereby facilitating the ownership of European and US airlines by each other's investors. Furthermore, there remains the potential for a second stage agreement to further improve choice for consumers by further opening market access. Should no second stage agreement be reached by the end of November 2010, then both sides have the right to suspend certain rights under the existing agreement. [more]