India, Greece ink MoU for air services pact 07/09/2016

India, Greece ink MoU for air services pact
07/09/2016 17:23
India on Wednesday inked a preliminary pact with Greece for bilateral Air Services Agreement that proposes to allow unlimited points of call for domestic airlines in the European nation.
Seeking to improve international air connectivity for Indian carriers, the government has been entering into air services pacts with many countries besides making efforts to re-negotiate existing agreements.
Civil Aviation Secretary R N Choubey on Wednesday said India and Greece have signed an MoU for Air Services Agreement (ASA) under the 'open sky' policy.
"We have (proposed) to give six points of call and India will have unlimited points of call in Greece," he said on the sidelines of an event.
Once inked, it would be the first such ASA with Greece, which is known for its tourist spots and scenic beauty.
According to Choubey, this is also the first MoU with a country under the provisions of the new civil aviation policy.
According to the policy, the government would enter into an 'open sky' air services agreement on a reciprocal basis with SAARC nations as well as countries with territory located entirely beyond a 5,000 kilometre radius from New Delhi.
"Unlimited flights above the existing bilateral rights will be allowed directly to and from major international airports within the country as notified by Ministry of Civil Aviation from time to time," it said.
However, the points of call at other airports under the existing air service agreements would continue to be honoured till the same are renegotiated.
Meanwhile, the ministry would hold discussions with local airlines on bilaterals before starting negotiations with Dubai.
The ministry would have discussions with "domestic airlines on bilaterals before September 20... Before negotiating seat entitlements with Dubai," Choubey said.