The Council of the European Union has approved the signing of aviation agreements with Ukraine, Armenia, and Tunisia, as well as an air transport agreement with Qatar. These agreements will open up the air transport market, offering new opportunities for both consumers and operators, according to the Council’s press release.

“The four agreements are expected to be signed in autumn 2021. Every agreement will then need to be ratified by each member state, the Union and the other party,” the statement reads.

The agreements remove market restrictions and associate these countries with the EU’s internal aviation market, as they are expected to adopt EU aviation standards and implement EU aviation rules.

Through more efficient connectivity, the agreements will promote trade, tourism, investment and economic and social development.

“I am very happy about approval by the Council of the EU of the Common Aviation Area agreement between Ukraine and the EU. Long awaited, hopefully to be signed soon. Will integrate Ukraine with Europe’s single aviation market, guarantee high standards of safety and security, benefit air travellers and the aviation industry,” EU Ambassador to Ukraine Matti Maasikas said.

At the same time, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky thanked the Council of the EU for approving the agreement with Ukraine.

“The agreement will allow our citizens to get cheaper tickets and expand the geography of travel. Its signing will be another step towards entering the single European space,” the Ukrainian Head of State noted.

As a reminder, this agreement aims to equalise the rights of Ukrainian and European airlines, lift the monopoly on certain routes established by bilateral agreements, facilitate the opening of new routes between Ukrainian and European cities, and, as a result, reduce ticket prices.

The agreement was initialed back in 2013, but has not yet been signed due to the UK-Spain conflict over the status of Gibraltar airport. The document was supposed to be signed in Brussels on 11 February, but in early February, the President’s Office reported that the signing had failed.

Bohdan Marusyak

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