SWISS has obtained the traffic rights required for its operations to the USA. The new Swiss airline can thus now benefit from the extremely liberal Open Skies Agreement between the USA and Switzerland. With the sole exceptions of Russia and India, the traffic rights to other destinations for which SWISS has had to apply anew are also expected to be granted by March 20.
“We are confident that SWISS will have the traffic rights it needs by March 31,” says Christian Watts, Vice President External Relations with the new airline. That optimism is based on the fact that the corresponding applications were submitted in good time to the various civil aviation authorities.
The only countries for which traffic rights may take longer to obtain are Russia and India. In these cases, the granting of such rights is linked to the payment of royalties to the national carrier (Aeroflot and Air India respectively), an arrangement which tends to prolong the negotiations. In the case of India, discussions are currently being held on the possibility of a closer collaboration with Air India.