The Canadian Airports Council has applauded the federal government’s new international air policy vision. “In the Government’s new policy blueprint, Minister Cannon clearly has recognised that airports, the tourist sector, and the communities we serve all have a very big stake in direction of Canada’s international air policy,” said CAC President and CEO Jim Facette.
“We look forward to implementation of a policy that will facilitate a more competitive Canada, resulting in economic benefits for the communities airports serve.”
The CAC supports the government’s “proactive” approach to pursuing more liberalized agreements for international air service and welcomed the government’s plans to pursue Open Skies as a primary objective. The paper also says that recognition must be given to community priorities, urges a separate liberalized approach for cargo and calls on Canada to pursue a multilateral approach to air regimes, where appropriate.
In its new policy document, Transport Canada adopted four of the recommendations made by the CAC in its September position paper on international air policy (Unbridling Canada, Why a New International Air Policy is Imperative for a Competitive Canada, available on the CAC Web site):
The CAC endorsed other important reforms in the policy document, including allowing all Canadian airports the freedom to attract cargo transhipment activity where there are market opportunities. Also welcomed is a review of provisions to foreign carrier access that would be more effective in allowing foreign carriers to launch service in the absence of bilateral provisions to allow it.
“Canadian airports are busy actively marketing their communities to the air carriers of the world, and what we have asked for is an international air policy framework from Canada that allows these communities to compete fairly and take advantage of the opportunities available,” said Mr. Facette. “We look forward to adoption of the government’s new international air policy, and an aggressive pursuit of Open Skies with Canada’s trading and tourism partners.”
The CAC will continue to study the international air policy document over the coming weeks and will submit follow-up materials to its position paper filed in September.