Ministry invites UAE for talks on air traffic rights 

The bilateral at a time when the government is aggressively pursuing Air India disinvestment has come as a surprise.

Published: 23rd October 2019 08:23 AM  |   Last Updated: 23rd October 2019 08:23 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: The Ministry of Civil Aviation has invited the United Arab Emirates for bilateral discussions on the issue of air traffic rights on October 23 following request by the UAE’s civil aviation authorities.  

The bilateral at a time when the government is aggressively pursuing Air India disinvestment has come as a surprise. The government had in October 2018 decided not to allow an increase in flights operated by carriers from the UAE or to re-designate flights. However, sources said that may happen this time due to pressure from the oil-rich country. Sources said there will be deliberations on re-designation of flights in a reversal of the policy. 

India’s air service agreement with the UAE is unique and different from the standard process of bilateral flying agreements signed between two countries. While India has single air service agreement with the UAE, New Delhi has given separate traffic rights to four Emirates of the UAE. 

Because of this, four airlines of the four emirates — Etihad (Abu Dhabi), Emirates (Dubai), Air Arabia (Sharjah) and RAK Airways (Ras-Al-Khaima) —have separate MoUs for respective traffic rights. The departure from the globally prevalent  norm was due to reluctance by each Emirate to share its entitlement with each other.  

RAK Airways stopped flying since 2014. Since no other airline from any of the Emirates could replace the RAK Airways right as per the MoU, Air Arabia saw an opportunity to grab those seats, which is against the deal.

Even a Parliament reply from the ministry had said in 2017 that re-designation was not possible under the MoUs signed.  Sources said India-UAE is among the busiest and most lucrative international routes. 

DGCA to go for digitisation 

Following a clerical error due to which a civil aircraft was assigned a military code, the aviation regulator has decided for complete digitisation of the system. A SpiceJet plane flying into Pakistan airspace after being assigned military code was recently intercepted by Pakistan air force fighter jets. Considering the fact that any manual error can lead to a bigger controversy, a senior official said the regulator has decided to computerize the whole system by a leading IT service provider, probably by Tata Consultancy Services.

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp