Friday, March 27, 2015

Serbia and US to sign Air Service Agreement

Belgrade - US flights within reach

The Serbian government has approved a Bilateral Air Service Agreement with the United States yesterday, which will regulate traffic between the two countries, marking an important development in Air Serbia’s ambitions to fly to the States. It comes after the Serbian Civil Aviation Directorate and the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reached a principle agreement last November on all disputed provisions of a 1977 Bilateral Air Service Agreement between the two. The Serbian government says the agreement will be ratified “soon”. The country’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Construction, Transport and Infrastructure, Zorana Mihajlović, will act as a signatory on Serbia’s behalf.

In a statement, the Serbian government said, “The Ministry for Construction, Transport and Infrastructure has made it possible for the national carrier to become the first airline in the region to operate flights to the United State after almost sixteen years. This agreement is the fulfilment of one of the national airline's most important development goals and will boost economic cooperation between the two countries, generate employment and lead to the development of airport infrastructure, as it will initiate the construction of another runway and passenger terminal”. It continues, “All of this will boost Air Serbia’s brand, while Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport will become more attractive to potential investors and a regional hub, which will in turn significantly boost exports to the United States”.

Earlier this month, the President of the Supervisory Board of Air Serbia, Siniša Mali, said the airline will launch flights from Belgrade to New York, Chicago and Toronto in early 2016, describing it as a “crowning moment” for the airline. Air Serbia’s CEO, Dane Kondić, said last month that he hopes the carrier will launch transatlantic flights within the next twelve to fourteen months. During a visit to the Serbian capital last year, the President and CEO of Etihad Airways and Vice Chairman of Air Serbia, James Hogan, mentioned that transatlantic flights will operate from Belgrade with an Airbus A330 aircraft if the numbers stack up. “Once flights begin, the Airbus A330 will be used. Etihad has the type in its fleet and it can be transferred to Air Serbia. It’s important for the numbers to stack up and for us to choose the right moment and be ready. Regardless of whether flights launch in 2015 or 2016, we have to set off all that is necessary on the US market, such as tour operators and public relations, because it is important to distinguish the company apart from the former Jat”, Mr. Hogan said. He added, “We are not aiming for our guests to be only Serbs visiting relatives and friends in their homeland but also others such as tourists and businesspeople who will fly with Air Serbia”.

During 2014, the FAA upgraded Serbia from a category two to a category one status, allowing airlines registered in Serbia to operate flights to the US. The upgrade does not grant the national carrier or any other airline from Serbia automatic rights to operate services to the United States. After the Air Service Agreement is signed between the two countries, Air Serbia will have to apply for a license with the US Department of Transport in order to be given necessary permits to launch flights.


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47 comments:

  1. "The Ministry for Contraction, Transport and Infrastructure"

    I couldn't have said it better myself...even if I tried! :-)

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  2. Ambition is good, but when will JU replace AT7? They are underpowered old tins belonging to an aviation museum! Very unpleasant experience.

    I assume there are no safety issues with JU's old fleet, but in line with Air Serbia's new branding and regional expansion, one would at least expect a decent turboprop. Any plans in this respect?

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    Replies
    1. Atr72 is the most "decent turboprop" of that size in the world according to the market share.

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  3. Potpisivanje ugovora Air service agreement pre neki dan izmedju USA i Srbije je jeste sigurno najbolja vest za mart mesec. Bar sto se tice Srpskog putnickog vazduhoplovstva. Jos sledi potpisivanje za licencu za nacionalnu kompaniju Er Srbiju. Sve ostalo posle toga je u rukama Er Srbije sa partnerom. Neminovno to vreme dolazi. Siguran sam da tim nacionalnog prevozioca Srbije Know How. U narednih 12 meseci pred nama gledacu insigniju Er Srbije sa spojenim orlovima, gde slece na na piste Njujorka, Cikaga, Toronta... To je velika radost za drzavu koja nemoze biti osrtrvo. To ce biti radost za svakog ko poseduje moc radovanja. Do ljudi je da rade uporno, mnogo, uz istinsko postovanje svih ljudi, kompanija, drzava... Istinitost, otvorenost i upornost potiru mrznju, nemoc, negativnost.
    Iz pred-Vaskrsnjeg Kraljeva, Radovan. QANTASVILLE II.

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  4. Great news. Wondering what all the people who say it's never going to happen will say now? From the very beginning 2016 was mentioned as the likeliest launch date and I think they are on track now to launch flights in April 2016. My only worry is the airport.

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    1. I am one of those who were saying it wasn't going to happen, and I still say it's not going to happen, at least not that soon, because : - Agreement between the countries means nothing, there are at least 10 countries in Europe that have such Agreements, and don't have flights to the USA,
      - Serbia is politically to close with Russia, which the USA doesn't like,
      - American mega-carriers have just started the "war" against MEB3, which highly likely includes the "war" against the airlines that they partly own and/or controll,
      - there are no new flights and additional planes for this season, which means no growth, and growth and bigger numbers are what Hogan himself stated as condition for eventual start of long-haul operations,
      - 99% of potential P2P US-Serbia passengers for this flights are either highly seasonal or extremely low-yielding,
      - citizens of almost all countries eastern of Serbia (potential transit markets) need visas to go to the USA,
      - 1 daily flight, and it's difficult to imagine higher frequency, is hard to incorporate in transit waves system in manner to avoid longer stopover times - Belgrade Airport as it is, doesn't fulfill all requirements needed for direct US flights
      - and so on and so on

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    2. Because you have close relations to Russia it means that you can't have flights to the US? Lol. You are obviously not from Serbia otherwise you would know that our government has become a US puppet in every sense. Among other things are government just signed an agreement for NATO tanks and military to move freely around the country.

      As for new routes, two new routes are being considered for this summer (later on in the summer). One is seasonal, one is yearlong.

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    3. Speaking of Russia, I would have accepted your lol if we talked 2 or 3 years ago. Today, situation is much different, there is practically "new cold war" going on and agreement with nato is just an attempt of current politicians to show that they are the US partner (or puppet as you say), but it's completely opposite, they are tied to Russia much much more than it shows.
      2 new routes, with no new seat capacity, and with increased prices on existing routes after promotion period is over, cannot raise the numbers. Period.
      I'm glad you agree with my other 6 reasons, as you haven't opposed them.

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    4. What is there to be glad about?

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    5. Total capacity increased by 9.3% compared to summer 2014. Nearly 5,700 seats more than last summer season

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    6. No, i mean 'glad about being right that the flights won't happen'.

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    7. @ 2:50
      Being glad about communicating with civilized people, who accept your opinion which is based on facts, and are not viewing things black and white, as you, for example.
      Btw. I'm NOT GLAD that ASL will highly likely not commence long-haul in 2016. I wish those flights happened much before. But some people understand and accept such possibility, and others, blinded, or manipulated. are not seeing and not accepting it

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    8. You are really a fool, i'm not taking any party neither expressed any opinion.

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  5. A step in good direction!

    I hope the plans realize for Air Serbia. On the fleet plan, I also agree the ATRs gotta go....replace them with new -600 or get Q400. The old 737s gotta go too...sorry, I like the plane but we are talking about almost 30yr old jets.

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    Replies
    1. trenutno su pet Transaero 737 u BEG?

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    2. da, to je Jat Tehnika, godinama rade MRO za njih, nema tu vesti.

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  6. I can't stand the face of that 'pilot' and of that gal next to him.

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    1. Bad day? You do realize he is an actual pilot. Not a 'pilot' o.O

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    2. Kompleks je cudna boljka kod nekih... a piloti izgledaju sasvim ok...

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    3. pilot under comas = media face. I find them both truly repulsive and don't know why Air Serbia chose them to represent the company, there are much more presentable crews than that.

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    4. What? They look perfectly fine to me.

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  7. Great news. Summer 2016 seems realistic to start these flights and gives them enough time to sort out all the details.

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    Replies
    1. Wonder if they will change their business and economy product. Sitting in those leather economy eats for 9 hours wouldn't be too comfortable.

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  8. Imagine a US airlines suddenly expressed interest to fly to BEG. How that would ruin there plans :D and I'm sure they wouldn't be able not to issue them a license.

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    1. As if they were able to read your mind, Hawaiian Airlines just announced interest to fly HNL-ANC-BEG! Passengers will be greeted with a lei, mahalo nui loa!

      No, Belgrade is nowhere near the top of US airlines wish list.

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  9. Weren't people claiming here this would never happen because of Alitalia?

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    1. What? Signing of Bilateral Air Service Agreement with the United States and Serbia? I have been following this blog for some time and can't seem to remember that people were claiming that this agreement would never be signed.

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  10. They fully deserve to fly transatlantic service. I flew in business class 3 days ago Beg-SVO(YU-APD) and I was pampered throughout the entire flight with excellent service. Congratulations!!! ASL is beating almost any European business class service at the moment.

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    Replies
    1. how was the load?

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    2. 2 in business overall 86pax

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    3. I guess Aleksandar Stojanovic is being proved wrong once again.

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    4. Nobody is flying business class, na na na mwa mwa mwa ;( ...

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    5. Those loads are not good, but ok for March. 70% load in Economy and 25% in business is probably just enough to make it even or slight profit with a bit of cargo.

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  11. Nadam se da ce sad sve sto je planirano i da se ostvari.
    INN-NS

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  12. Wizz Air Ukraine ne postoji vise to bi trebala ASL da iskoristi.
    AB je ostvario ogroman gubitak.
    INN-NS

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    Replies
    1. INN-NS, if all the big companies such as LH and AB are having a loss in Ukraine what would make ASL a better contender? Your logic is svi gube ali ASL tu moze da dobije. There are far better options for ASL when it comes to expansion such as Cairo, Spain, and even Amman.

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    2. Pitajte OS kako posluju u Ukrajini.
      INN-NS

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    3. are you ok INN-NS? Comparing OS and its network to ASL?

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    4. Ne uporedjujem nego kazem da ne posluju svi lose u Ukrajini a taman ASL kad bude letela za USA mozda ce i neki Ukrajinac da leti.
      INN-NS

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    5. INN-NS you are forgetting that Ukrainian International has flights to JFK and those flights are actually the cheapest ones on the whole European continent. Also LH, OS, etc will always have better options than ASL ( if it potentially starts US and Canada flights). Maybe with an atr 72 flights to Kiev would be feasible, but with an airbus 319 hell no!

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    6. INN is so well informed :)

      Thumbs up kid!

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  13. I went to www.exyuaviation.com and it's up and running, posting this comment from there. Best wishes for a new site!

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    1. the site looks the same to me or am I hallucinating :D

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    2. No, you're not. It was a big fuss about nothing. Well, besides 10$ that he paid for the domain.

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    3. I assume that the admin will make some changes soon, at least whats he said, although I thought it will be from today.

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    4. Thank you AirCEO.

      As was written here and on the site's Facebook page, a new look will be coming soon.

      @ Anonymous March 28, 2015 at 3:30 AM: I wouldn't call two announcements under the news item - one on Tuesday and one on Friday "a big fuss". We seem to have a different understanding of the word's meaning. The reason it was announced at all was because some older browsers are actually asked to redirect to the new address, they are not automatically led there. So, in order for them to know what's going on, a huge"fuss" of a total of two announcements was made, which you seem to have a big problem with. As for the rest of your swipe, really don't feel the need to dignify it with a response.

      Delete

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