Philippines, Myanmar to hold air talks

Posted at 05/08/2014 5:27 PM | Updated as of 05/08/2014 5:27 PM

MANILA, Philippines – Officials from the Philippines and Myanmar are set to discuss air agreements in Yangon on May 19 as part of the efforts to boost tourism, the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) said.

Philippine Airlines Inc. (PAL) and Cebu Pacific have both expressed interest in mounting direct flights to Myanmar.

Transportation Undersecretary Jose Perpetuo Lotilla stressed the importance of an air pact with Myanmar with next year’s Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) integration.

Philippines, Myanmar and eight other countries make up the ASEAN.

The Philippine Air Services Negotiating Panel, composed of officials from the DOTC, Civil Aeronautics Board, Department of Tourism, Department of Foreign Affairs, Clark International Airport Corp. and representatives of Philippine carriers, will also hold air talks with Canada, Taiwan, Russia and South Korea this year.

Air talks with Malaysia scheduled in April were cancelled to give way to search operations of the missing Malaysia Airline flight MH370.

In the first three months of this year, the Philippines successfully concluded air talks with France, Singapore and New Zealand.

In 2013, the Philippines signed new air agreements with Japan, Macau, Brazil, Australia, Israel, and Italy.

The Aquino administration is pursuing discussions on air agreements with other countries as part of its open skies policy.