The Philippines and Singapore seal new air deal

12 May 2009

The Philippines and Singapore have concluded a new air services deal, increasing the number of seat allotments between the two countries to 26,000 a week.

The pact allows for 11,200 seats between Manila and Singapore, 10,000 seats between Clark, Subic and Singapore and 5,000 seats between Cebu, Davao and Singapore per direction per week.

In terms of number of flights, this means an addition of 16 weekly flights between Singapore and Manila to the existing more than a hundred flights between Singapore and the Philippines weekly, operated by Philippine and Singapore carriers. It also allows for 50 additional flights between Singapore and Clark per week.

Clark, the former US air force base renamed Diosdado Macapagal International Airport (DMIA), was also given fifth freedom rights to any destination around the world, except the US and Canada.

The agreement is the seventh the Philippines has signed this year, following deals signed earlier with Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Brunei and Australia.

The move was well received by Philippine carriers who applauded the increased business opportunities. It is understood that Philippine Airlines, Cebu Pacific and Zest Air are keen to expand their services.

“We welcome new air service agreements because these will allow us to expand our international operations by mounting new or additional flights,” said Candice Iyog, Cebu Pacific Air vice- president for marketing and distribution.

The Philippine Air Panel heads next for Spain on May 19 for similar aviation talks.

Joshua Tan

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