The Macedonian government has expressed interest for the introduction of nonstop flights between Skopje and Toronto. The Macedonian Ministry for Transport and Communication, which recently held talks with Turkish Airlines over possible services to the United States, says it has now also proposed potential operations to Canada's largest city. Turkish Airlines' CEO, Bilal Eksi, noted that the opening of flights from Skopje to both the United States and Canada will be taken under consideration. Furthermore, Turkish will provide assistance to neighbouring Albania which is seeking to establish its own national carrier. Macedonia and Turkey have an Open Skies Agreement in place with Canada, which permits for a Turkish carrier to be issued fifth freedom rights by regulators from all parties involved.
The Macedonian Civil Aviation Agency said last year that services between Skopje and Toronto would largely rely on diaspora traffic. "Canada has more potential than the United States because there is a bigger Macedonian diaspora. However, this argument alone is still not strong enough for us to begin procedures for the introduction of flights", the regulator said. Previously, the Agency noted that the response from Canada-based airlines for the launch of seasonal flights to Skopje during the peak summer and winter months had been "favourable". Air Transat is the only Canadian carrier which currently maintains services to the former Yugoslavia, with a two weekly seasonal flight to Zagreb.
The Macedonian Civil Aviation Agency first expressed interest for the introduction of services to Canada back in 2011. Two years later, the former head of the regulator, Dejan Mojsoski, who now serves as the Pan European Coordinator at Eurocontrol in Brussels, said that a Canadian airline was interested in launching transatlantic flights to Skopje. “A carrier has shown interest and it is not a typical low budget airline, instead, it offers a mixed product. Its initial interest is a good indicator for us”, Mr Mojsoski said at the time. Furthermore, Skopje Airport's operator, TAV, as well as the Macedonian government, were to carry out a feasibility study into the potential of transatlantic flights to the Macedonian capital.