Dubai: India and the UAE are soon expected to witness a significant increase in passenger traffic as a result of the agreement between the two countries on Tuesday to increase flight services.
A provisional agreement was signed to facilitate more flights on the India-Abu Dhabi and India-Ras Al Khaimah sectors.
As per the agreement, UAE carrier Ethihad Airways will be allowed to fly to Chennai and Calicut from next month and to Kolkata and Jaipur from October.
The agreement will help bring down the tariffs and increase traffic entitlement.
The agreement will be sent to the Indian Cabinet for final approval following which a formal agreement will be signed. Provisionally, the agreement becomes operational as of now.
Under the new agreement, both countries have agreed to allow code sharing. India has also agreed to allow flights to four new destinations from Abu Dhabi.
Also, Ras Al Khaimah airways, which plans to start flights to India from March, will be allowed to choose any one destination out of Calicut, Cochin and Trivandrum in Kerala.
“The current agreement has been revised and incorporates all the new changes that have taken place in the aviation sector in the last two decades. The new Air Services Agreement addresses many issues including safety and security provisions,” said R K Singh, joint secretary in the Ministry of Civil Aviation. Singh led the talks with the UAE side.
Last moth, India and Saudi Arabia decided to hike the seat entitlement per week from 8,500 to 20,000 and designate more than one airline to operate in each other’s territory.
While Saudi airlines have been allowed to fly to new points of call like Calicut, Lucknow and Bangalore, Madina was opened as a new destination for their Indian counterparts.
Saudi carriers already operate to Delhi, Mumbai, Kochi, Chennai and Hyderabad, while Indian airlines have the rights to fly to Jeddah, Riyadh and Dammam.
Both sides also decided to free cargo services without any restriction in terms of frequency and points of call.