New opportunities following bilateral air agreement
The Serbian Minister for Transport, Milutin Mrkonjić, and the Australian Ambassador to Serbia, Helena Studdert, signed a treaty level agreement on air services between Australia and Serbia this week. This agreement will allow airlines from both Serbia and Australia to start air services between the two countries either using their own aircraft or via cooperative arrangements with other airlines. Ambassador Studdert noted that “the Agreement should lead to our own airlines being able to properly serve the market between our two countries, rather than all traffic being carried by third country airlines”.
The agreement has now cleared all bureaucratic obstacles for the implementation of the Jat - Etihad codesharing agreement on flights from Abu Dhabi to/from Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne. Jat’s flight numbers will be added onto Etihad flights to Australia from June 15. Furthermore, Virgin Australia International Airlines will add its own code on Etihad Airways’ service between Abu Dhabi and Belgrade, which is to be inaugurated in less than a month. “Aviation links tend to act as catalysts for other economic links, stimulating trade and tourism. I expect this agreement will do just that, and will grow bilateral trade and tourism between Australia and Serbia. The agreement we are signing today is the first air services agreement between our countries, bringing the bilateral relations between our countries to a new level”, Ambassador Studdert said.
Meanwhile, Jat Tehnika, which maintains Jat aircraft, was yesterday granted a license to begin servicing Airbus A320 family jets for the first time in its long history. “After checks which lasted for six months and preparations which lasted for over a year, the Serbian Civil Aviation Directorate has found that Jat Tehnika is now fully equipped to service both domestic and foreign airlines operating this aircraft type”. The license is recognised by the European Aviation Safety Agency. Two Airbus A319s are set to join Jat’s fleet in a few weeks.