By Lenie Lectura
April 11, 2012
April 11, 2012
THE Philippines and South Korea last week agreed to amend an existing air pact by expanding the number of entitlements of designated carriers of each country by half or an additional 9,500 weekly seats.
At present, there are 19,000 weekly seat entitlements being utilized by carriers on both sides. Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) Executive Director Carmelo Arcilla, in an interview, said this was increased by half for a total of 28,500 seats per week for each country.
“Now both sides can mount as much as 28,500 seats per week. These seats can be used at any points in the country and the CAB will allot them depending on the requirement of an airline who files an application with us because we are the sole authority that grants entitlements,” said Arcilla.
The amended air services agreement was signed last week during the two-day air talks in Seoul that ended on Tuesday last week.
The CAB is part of the Philippine air panel that negotiates for traffic rights with other countries. The other panel members include the Departments of Transportation and Communications, Foreign Affairs, Tourism, Trade and Industry, and representatives from the airline companies.
Arcilla said he expects all local airlines to apply for additional South Korea entitlements with the CAB.
“Tourists from Korea are our biggest market. Last year we had about 925,000 Korean arrivals in the country and we see that increasing to 1 million this year,” he said.
The CAB is now working to seek confirmed schedules for air talks with other countries that include Hong Kong, Myanmar and Indonesia, among others.