Guyana on Wednesday signed an open skies Air Services Agreement with the Republic of Colombia, to promote and facilitate airlines to operate air services between the two countries, as well as other countries.
The Agreement was signed in Bogota, Colombia by Mr. Jair Orlando Fajardo, Director, Colombian Civil Aviation Authority and Bishop Juan Edghill, Minister of Public Works, at the thirteenth ICAO Air Services Negotiation (ICAN2021) event, being held between December 6-10 in Colombia.
In addition to the standard articles of Grant of Rights; Designation and Revocation; User Charges; Recognition of Certificates and Licences; Tariffs; Commercial Opportunities; Fair Competition, inter alia, Minister Edghill said “in this Agreement, we have agreed to remove all restrictions on market access, capacity, frequencies, and pricing to create for a more open market and to give route rights to our respective airlines”.
Minister Edghill further noted that the agreement is in keeping with the Government’s commitment to connect Guyana with the rest of the world.
Consistent with Government’s model of open skies agreements, the Agreement facilitates acceptance of the Principal Place of Business as a means of designating an airline in contrast to the traditional restrictive requirement of substantial ownership and effective control by nationals of either country.
This means that the airlines could benefit from foreign share capital and investment, once they establish their main economic and operating base in either Colombia or Guyana.
The Principal Place of Business condition for airline designation is now a common inclusion in Air Services Agreements and creates a very advantageous position for small states with limited capital or financial resources.
Presently, there is no direct flights between Guyana and Colombia, however, this Agreement puts in place the legal framework that opens market access for airlines to operate and enhance competitive air transport services, trade, and economic growth between the two countries.
The signing of this Agreement is complementary to the bilateral engagement held at 76th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York between President Dr Irfaan Ali and His Excellency Iván Duque Márquez, where the two Heads of State agreed to strengthen bilateral relations and technical cooperation.
The Agreement complements the more than 50 Air Services Agreements Guyana has established with other ICAO States for the development of the airlink among States.
Guyana and Colombia established diplomatic relations on December 18, 1970.