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     FrontPage Edition: Wed 3 October 2007

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Singapore and UK conclude landmark Open Skies Agreement



Singapore and the United Kingdom (UK) have concluded a landmark Open Skies Agreement (OSA) on 2 October 2007, removing all restrictions on air services operated by carriers of both countries.
With this agreement, Singapore Airlines (SIA) will now be able to operate as many services as the Singapore-UK market could support.
Its aircraft can also pick up passengers from Londonís Heathrow Airport and fly them onwards to other cities, including those in the United States (US).
Similarly, UK carriers will be able to operate any number of services beyond Singapore to any other city in the world. These rights, which will be effective from end-March 2008, come nearly two decades after Singapore first made its request to the UK.
Mr Raymond Lim, Minister for Transport and Second Minister for Foreign Affairs said, "This is indeed a trail-blazing agreement concluded between two forward-looking countries that share a common objective of promoting free competition in the aviation sector. It also reflects the strong bilateral ties between Singapore and the UK."
This ground-breaking agreement is even more liberal than conventional OSAs, as it provides for unlimited "hubbing" and "cabotage" rights for carriers of both countries.
As an illustration, Singapore carriers will be allowed to base their aircraft in UK and use UK as a hub to operate to any other country without any restriction on destination, frequency of service or capacity. The same privilege applies to UK carriers. The cabotage rights allow Singapore carriers to operate like a domestic carrier in the UK and to mount any number of services between UK cities.
The landmark agreement is the first of its kind for the UK, and only the second for Singapore, which already has a similar unrestricted OSA with the UAE. With this, Singapore will have OSAs with more than 20 countries, including 10 in the European Union.
3 OCTOBER 2007

Source: Press Release 3 Oct 2007

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Public Holidays HARI RAYA PUASA is the next public holiday. It falls on 13 October 2007.