Expanded Air Services Agreement Struck
The Philippines and Australia have established a new air services agreement, making way for expanded services on routes between the two countries.
The new air service agreement was struck during talks between Australia and the Philippines in Canberra last week.
Capacity Entitlements Increased by Nearly 50 Percent
Under the new agreement, Philippine and Australian airlines will now be able to offer a maximum of 4,000 seats each way per week. This is a significant increase from the previous limit, which were 2,500 seats.
Further increase in capacity entitlements for Philippine flag carriers is expected next year. By March 2016, Philippine airlines operating to Australia’s four main gateways, namely Melbourne, Sydney, Perth and Brisbane, will be entitled to a 9,300-seat capacity each week.
According to Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss, the Philippines was a growing aviation market. Over the past five years, the Philippines posted an average growth rate of 10.5 per cent.
Philippine’s Growing Aviation Market
“The new arrangements will allow this growth rate to continue for another four years, recognising the potential of Australia as a prime tourism destination within the Asia-Pacific region,” stated Truss.
“Increasing the number of flights between Australia and the Philippines will help ensure that we have the aviation capacity necessary to meet future growth in demand,” Truss added.
313,000 Travelers Between the Two Countries
More than 313,000 people travelled between Australia and the Philippines last year.
Australia’s Ambassador to the Philippines Rod Smith said in a statement, “The new arrangements are a good example of Australia and the Philippines working together to liberalise international aviation to the benefit of the travelling public, the tourism industry and airline carriers in both Australia and the Philippines.”