13 December 2006

Canada releases "Blue Sky" international air policy

On 27 November 2006 the Canadian Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, Honourable Lawrence Cannon, released Blue Sky: Canada's New International Air Policy. This followed the Canadian House of Commons Standing Committee on Transport undertaking a study on Air Liberalization and the Canadian airports system. In October 2006 the Canadian Minister of Transport had released a consultation document UPDATED on a New International Air Policy.

Canada now joins a small but growing list of countries proactively seeking to negotiate "open skies" type air services agreements - at least in some circumstances. Earlier this year Canada had announced new open air services agreements with the United Kingdom and Portugal.

It is interesting to compare this new Canadian statement with the media statement on Australian international air services policy made Australia's Minister of Transport, Honourable Warren Truss, on 21 February 2006.

New Zealand's International Air Transport Policy was last comprehensively updated in a restatement in 1998. It also receives brief mentions, particularly on page 17, in the December 2002 New Zealand Transport Strategy.

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