Yesterday, a bilateral air agreement was signed between the Serbian and Russian presidents in Belgrade. The new agreement will grant Russian airlines the right to fly to Serbia without too many bureaucracy procedures while Jat will be allowed to operate to Russian cites. The two countries already had a liberal aviation policy towards each other. Currently Aeroflot serves Belgrade, while Jat flies to Moscow, although it still has slots in St. Petersburg and Sochi which are not being used. Furthermore, Gazpromavia operates scheduled services from Sochi to Belgrade. Transaero, Russia’s second largest airline, has also expressed interest in the purchase of Jat Tehnika, which maintains Jat’s aircraft.
Last week representatives from the Abu Dhabi Department of Transport, Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Emirates Airline and Etihad Airways signed a memorandum of understanding with the Government and Republic of Serbia. The two delegations agreed that any number of designated airlines of both parties will have the right to perform scheduled air services. The UAE delegation informed that its aeronautical authority designated Emirates Airline, Etihad Airways, RAK Airways, Air Arabia and FlyDubai as UAE national airlines under the agreement. The Serbian delegation informed that its aeronautical authority designated Jat Airways as the Serbian national airline under the agreement. The agreement allows unrestricted frequencies, capacity and types of aircraft, whether owned or leased, to be operated by the designated airlines of each country in any type of service (passenger or cargo) on routes between Serbia and the UAE. The agreement also includes, in addition to third and fourth freedom rights, the practice of full fifth freedom traffic rights to all points of their choice without any restriction while operating any type of services (passenger and/or cargo, separately or in combination). In addition, both parties agreed to allow unrestricted non-scheduled operations between the two countries and to recommend to their authorities to conclude an agreement for the avoidance of double taxation on revenues arising from their airlines' activities and income earned by their employees when stationed in the territory of the other party.
Currently Jat Airways operates flights to Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE. The United Arab Emirates has an extremely liberated sky, allowing many airlines to operate as many services as they wish, allowing fifth freedom rights as well. The UAE liberated its sky a few years ago after the Government of the UAE came under fire by large European flag carriers of protectionism of Emirates Airline.