Japan's MLIT stated (09-Sep-2011) it would commence aviation talks for an open skies agreement with Canada in Vancouver on 13/14-Sep-2011. With the exception of the US, this will be the first open skies negotiations with a country outside east Asia and the ASEAN group, with which MLIT has almost completed conclusion for agreements.
Japan to commence open skies talks with Canada
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Scoot plans Kaohsiung-Osaka & Bangkok-Sapporo as long-haul LCCs focus on fifth freedom opportunities
Singapore Airlines long-haul low-cost subsidiary Scoot is planning to launch two fifth freedom routes as it expands capacity for the fist time in over 18 months. The new Singapore-Kaohsiung-Osaka and Singapore-Bangkok-Sapporo routes complement existing services from Taipei to Tokyo and Seoul and will lift Scoot’s share of capacity allocated to fifth freedom sectors to over 20%.
More fifth freedom flights for Scoot are likely, particularly from Bangkok due to the new restrictions blocking expansion to Japan and South Korea placed on its Thailand-based sister carrier NokScoot. Asia’s leading long-haul LCC, AirAsia X, is also planning to launch its first fifth freedom sector, Osaka-Honolulu, and is looking at other similar opportunities including from India to Europe.
Fifth freedom sectors are attractive as they often provide less competitive and higher yielding options than pursuing new routes from home markets. Allocating capacity to other markets is a good option for Scoot and AirAsia X as the Singapore and Malaysia markets have become relatively saturated.