The European Council recently gave the go-ahead for the signing of an air transport agreement with Qatar.
The agreement with Qatar will open the market equally with all 27 member states, upgrading the rules and standards that currently exist for flights between Qatar and the EU.
“This is the first such agreement between the EU and a Gulf country,” the Council said in an announcement.
Moreover, the Council greenlighted three neighbourhood aviation agreements with Ukraine, Armenia and Tunisia.
The three neighbourhood agreements will remove market restrictions in relation to the EU’s neighbouring countries and associate these countries with the EU’s internal aviation market, as they will adopt EU aviation standards and implement EU aviation rules.
According to the Council, the aviation agreements between the EU with the four countries will open up the air transport market, offering new opportunities for both consumers and operators.
“Through more efficient connectivity, they will promote trade, tourism, investment and economic and social development,” the Council said.
All four agreements contain robust environmental, social and fair competition clauses with strong enforcement mechanisms to avoid any distortions of competition or other abuses.
The decisions on Ukraine, Armenia and Qatar enable application of the agreement on a provisional basis, pending the completion of the procedures necessary for its entry into force.
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.