THE PHILIPPINES and Papua New Guinea now have expanded air entitlements, having signed an agreement to improve air connectivity on Thursday.
A statement from the Department of Transportation (DoTr) said the country’s designated airlines may now fly 1,500 seats weekly between Manila and Port Moresby from the previous 600.
For other areas in the Philippines and Papua New Guinea, a total of 3,000 seats are allotted every week, up from just 1,500 previously.
It noted state leaders from the two countries made the deal in a bid to develop agro-industries in the area.
“This expansion in air connection comes hot on the heels of Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O’Neill’s state visit in May, which resulted in the two nations committing to cooperate more closely in fishing and agriculture, particularly tuna processing and the development of rice and coconut farming,” DoTr added.
With guidance from the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB), the two governments conducted the talks which led to the signing of the deal.
“The negotiations saw the Department of Transportation (DOTr), through the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB), lead the Philippine Air Consultation Panel in the push for the expansion of entitlements for the designated carriers of both parties,” it said.
The DoTr also noted this year’s Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting will be held in Papua New Guinea, which is scheduled for November. — Denise A. Valdez