«Open Sky» with the EU: Will it Be Cheaper to Fly?»
This date was not chosen by chance. On June 5 Ukraine was going to sign the EU-Ukraine Common Aviation Area Agreement at the meeting of EU ministers in Luxembourg. On November 28, 2013 Ukraine and the European Union initialled a Common Aviation Area Agreement at the margins of the Eastern Partnership Summit in Vilnius. This agreement opens the way towards a "Common Aviation Area" between the EU and Ukraine, based on common and reliable standards in important areas such as aviation safety and air traffic management.
However, the so-called Open Skies Agreement was not signed on June 5, as it had been previously planned. It will be done on 27 June in Brussels together with a large agreement on the Association with the EU. The delay in signing the agreement is connected with the inconsistency of the issue about Gibraltar.
During the Media Club experts and government officials discussed what to expect from the agreement on "Open Sky" with the EU.
The Agreement will foster market access and offer new opportunities for consumers and airlines on both sides.In addition, the Agreement will lead to decline in prices on airline tickets for Ukrainians. However, to attain these objectives, Ukraine will have to align its legislation with EU aviation standards and enforce EU requirements in areas such as aviation safety, air traffic management, security, environment, economic regulation, competition, consumer protection and social aspects.
Cheap flights to the European states could be an effective instrument of the EU's soft power in Ukraine that will directly contribute to the European integration of Ukraine.
Valentin Zgursky, Head of Aviation Transport Department, Ministry of Infrastructure, Ukraine
Olena Melnyk Deputy Director of the Air Navigation and Foreign Relations Department, State Aviation Service of Ukraine
Serhiy Solodky, Deputy Director of the IWP
Oleksandr Kava, Head of the Center for Economic and Policy Analysis; expert in the transport field
The Media Club was organized with the support of the “Ukraine National Initiatives to Enhance Reforms” (UNITER) project and funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Pact.