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Air Transport Bilateral Agreements

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Air Services Agreements (ASAs) are formal contracts between countries – Memorandums of Understanding (Memorandum of Understanding) and formal diplomatic notes. It is not mandatory to have an ASA for the operation of international services, but cases where contract-free services exist are rare. An air services agreement (also known as the ATA or ASA) is a bilateral agreement that allows international commercial air services between signatories. In 1944, when World War II was in the final stages, 54 countries came to the conference in Chicago, USA, to talk about the future of international aviation. The conference resulted in the signing of the International Civil Aviation Convention, commonly known as the Chicago Convention. The Chicago Convention defined the rules governing international air travel activity. In addition, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the United Nations organization responsible for the planning and development of international air traffic (ICAO, 2011)1. The Australian government has negotiated 90 bilateral air services agreements and related agreements. These agreements allow our airlines to offer the range of services they offer today.

Bilateral air services agreements were then extended to multilateral air services agreements. «A multilateral air services agreement is the same as a bilateral air services agreement, the only difference being that it affects more than two states parties» (Wikipedia)4. These agreements subsequently resulted in another form of agreement, known as the «open skies» agreement. Regulation (EC) 847/2004 on the negotiation and implementation of air services agreements between Member States and third countries Horizontal negotiating method: changes with 41 countries and a regional organisation with 8 member states, which make up a further 670 bilateral agreements. The latter has the advantages of simplicity, cost efficiency and time. An ambitious agreement with Canada was signed in 2009. It creates a real open airspace between the EU and Canada and creates vast opportunities for mutual investment openness.

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