The Cabinet on Wednesday approved signing of a new air services agreement between India and Fiji that would allow Indian airlines to fly to any point in the island nation. The pact is for revising the ASA, which was entered into in January 1974.
The updation is being done as per the latest International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) template with an objective to improve air connectivity between the two countries, an official release said. It was cleared during the Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “The existing route schedule annex to the ASA has also been revised and new points of call have been added for enhanced connectivity.”
Now Indian carriers can operate to any points in Fiji from points in India whereas the carriers of Fiji can establish direct operation to Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai in India and by code share with Indian carriers to Bangalore, Kolkata, Hyderabad apart from points given for direct operation,” the release said. Further, Kochi, Varanasi, Ahmadabad and Amritsar can be served through domestic code share operations.
Among others, the designated airlines of both countries would have the right to establish offices in each other’s territory for promotion and sale of air services. Routes and frequencies of the designated airlines would be decided subsequently.
The pact also has provisions relating to “revocation or suspension of operating authorization, principles governing operations of agreed services, commercial opportunities, safety related clause etc. that were incorporated in the line of Indian model ASA”, the release said.
Draft text of the ASA has been finalised in consultation with Ministries of Law & Justice, Finance, External Affairs, Tourism and Department of Commerce, it added.