Wednesday 12 , delegations representing the United States and the Republic of Yemen initialed the text of a U.S.-Yemen Open Skies Agreement. The Agreement, which will be applied on the basis of comity and reciprocity pending entry into force, will liberalize our bilateral aviation relationship.
This agreement facilitates the potential for expansion of air service between our two countries while continuing to safeguard aviation safety and security. As with all such agreements, several steps must be taken before foreign carriers may commence service from their home country to the United States. These steps include obtaining (from the Department of Transportation) economic authority to operate in the U.S.; the Federal Aviation Administration issuing a favorable assessment of the host country’s civil aviation authority safety oversight practices; and, timely carrier notification to the Transportation Security Administration about the new service and verification by the TSA that the carrier has adopted and implemented a TSA-accepted security program for all operations landing and taking off in the United States.
Open Skies agreements have vastly expanded international passenger and cargo flights to and from the United States, promoting increased travel and trade, enhancing productivity, and spurring high-quality job opportunities and economic growth. Open Skies agreements do this by eliminating government interference in the commercial decisions of air carriers about routes, capacity, and pricing, freeing carriers to provide more affordable, convenient, and efficient air service for consumers.
America’s Open Skies policy has gone hand-in-hand with airline globalization. By allowing air carriers unlimited market access to our partners’ markets and the right to fly to all intermediate and beyond points, Open Skies agreements provide maximum operational flexibility for airline alliances.
The United States has achieved Open Skies with over 100 partners from every region of the world and at every level of economic development. In addition to bilateral Open Skies agreements, the United States has negotiated two multilateral Open Skies accords: (1) the 2001 Multilateral Agreement on the Liberalization of International Air Transportation (MALIAT) with New Zealand, Singapore, Brunei, and Chile, later joined by Samoa, Tonga, and Mongolia; and (2) the 2007 Air Transport Agreement with the European Community and its 27 Member States.