The creation of a common airspace for the countries comprising the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU; includes Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Russia) has been postponed until 2025, TASS news agency reports, citing Russian Deputy Transport Minister Valery Okulov. Earlier plans called for the process to be completed by 2020.
Okulov pointed out that the new date is reflected in the respective roadmap. He also assumed that the negotiations with Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan might take longer than those with Armenia and Belarus.
The common EAEU-wide airspace concept implies that all restrictions will be lifted on the number of the member nations’ designated carriers and flight frequencies. More importantly, the airlines will be able to operate flights within the entire territory of the union, whereas at present suchh air services are regulated by bilateral agreements.
Experts believe the new regime will be primarily beneficial to Russian airlines. Countries with strong national carriers, such as Kazakhstan’s Air Astana and Belarus’s Belavia, have been consistent in lobbying for the interests of their national operators, eschewing even preliminary negotiations on a common airspace.
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