Transport Minister Announces New Policy for International Scheduled Air Services

OTTAWA - Transport Minister David Collenette today announced that all Canadian carriers may now apply to operate scheduled international air services, regardless of the size of air travel markets.

Previously, Canadian air transportation policy allowed for designation of more than one Canadian air carrier, in non-U.S. air markets, only where one-way scheduled passenger trips exceeded 300,000 per year. Effective today, this traffic threshold has been eliminated.

“This new policy is designed to attract new Canadian carriers offering international scheduled air services by removing restrictions on the number of Canadian carriers designated to serve foreign markets,” said Mr. Collenette. “It will encourage competition, innovation, and growth in the Canadian airline industry, and promote international travel options for Canadian consumers.”

Canada’s designation policy for international scheduled air services was a key issue raised during a review of Canada’s international air policy, announced publicly in February 2001. Other issues raised, such as the liberalization of Canada’s approach to bilateral air negotiations, will be reconsidered when the Canadian airline industry has more fully recovered from the recent economic downturn and the events of September 11, 2001.

The new multiple designation policy has no effect on the Canada-U.S. Open Skies agreement, which already allows for multiple designations.