New Zealand successfully concluded negotiations for an air services agreement with ASEAN during a final round of talks in Siem Reap, Cambodia, on September 13.
The ASEAN-New Zealand Air Services Agreement (ANZ-ASA) will allow airlines from signatory countries to operate more passenger and/or cargo services between and beyond ASEAN and New Zealand. ASEAN member states include Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, Brunei Darussalam, Viet Nam, Laos, Myanmar, and Cambodia.
Per Protocol 1 of the ANZ-ASA, eligible airlines can operate between ASEAN countries and New Zealand with unlimited 3rd and 4th freedom traffic rights. In addition, eligible airlines will be able to fly up to seven weekly services with 5th freedom traffic rights in addition to existing bilateral entitlements between individual ASEAN states and New Zealand for one year from the date of entry into force of the agreement and up to 14 weekly services with 5th freedom traffic rights in addition to existing bilateral entitlements after one year from the date of entry into force of the agreement.
Tom Forster, Manager of Economic Regulation at New Zealand’s Ministry of Transport, told ch-aviation that it is good the government was able to get the new air services agreement across the line. “The new air services agreement raises the overall quality of our air services agreements with ASEAN and underlines the importance of air connectivity for trade, tourism, education and other people to people links,” he said.
Currently, no scheduled passenger airlines operate on the New Zealand – Laos, Viet Nam, the Philippines, Myanmar, Cambodia, Thailand, or Brunei Darussalam country pairs, although Emirates (EK, Dubai International) does presently operate a weekly B777-200F flight between Auckland and Hanoi.
On the remaining country pairs, Air New Zealand flies to Indonesia, operating thrice weekly on the Auckland – Denpasar city pair. It does not operate on the New Zealand – Malaysia country pair. However, Malaysia Airlines flies daily between Auckland and Kuala Lumpur while Batik Air Malaysia and AirAsia X fly into Auckland via Australian airports. Both Air New Zealand and Singapore Airlines operate on the Singapore – Auckland city pair, with the two Star Alliance members cooperating closely on the route. Singapore Airlines also has daily A350-900 flights on the Singapore – Christchurch city pair and a weekly freighter flight into Auckland via Melbourne Tullamarine. An Air New Zealand spokesperson told ch-aviation that they welcomed the New Zealand government’s program of international air services negotiations and the opening up of new air routes.
The ANZ-ASA will now be submitted for legal scrubbing in preparation for signature at a later date to be confirmed.
Source : ch-aviation