Muscat: The Sultanate of Oman, represented by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), has formally signed the Comprehensive Air Transport Agreement at the European Commission headquarters in the Belgian capital (Brussels).
The comprehensive agreement came as the culmination of several negotiation sessions between the two sides as the first round was held in March of 2019 in Muscat.
The signing ceremony was attended by Eng. Nayef bin Ali bin Hamad Al-Abri - CEO, Civil Aviation Authority, and Ambassador Najim bin Suleiman bin Najim Al-Abri - the Sultanate of Oman's ambassador to the Kingdom of Belgium and head of its mission to the European Union. The meeting was also attended by the European side- Henrik Hololley - Director-General of Transport at the European Commission.
It may be noted that the Sultanate of Oman currently has bilateral air transport agreements with (18) European countries, some of which have open rights, but a number of them include restricted rights, including agreements signed with France, Germany, and Italy. The comprehensive air transport agreement will open the way for the national carrier (Oman Air) to increase the number of its flights to the current European stations, as well as allow the addition of other European destinations for the national carriers (Oman Air and SalamAir).
In return, the agreement will allow all European airlines to operate their flights directly to the airports of the Sultanate of Oman from any member state of the European Union, where Air France (Air France) and Royal Dutch Airlines (KLM) currently operate their regular flights directly to Muscat International Airport, as well. Other European airlines operate seasonal tourist flights to Salalah Airport.
The agreement effectively aims to attract more airlines in the European Union to schedule their direct flights to various airports in the Sultanate of Oman. The agreement also includes provisions related to a number of other aspects, including provisions related to the safety and security of civil aviation, fair competition and equal commercial opportunities among airlines, as well as the foundations of air traffic management, environmental protection in the field of aviation, and social aspects of working in airlines.