Open skies come one step closer

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In June the Economic Development Committee announced that it wanted to bring to an end its current policy of licensing air routes between Jersey and the UK, the Isle of Man and the other Channel Islands and permit unfettered competition.

DC are now preparing to ask the States to change the law, but in the meantime they are revising their policy and inviting interested parties to comment.

n a draft revised policy statement the committee say: ‘One of the raisons d’être for the introduction of the Air Transport Licensing Law was the wish of the authorities to protect the high-frequency inter-island services provided by Aurigny.

A change in the nature of the service provided by that airline, with reduced frequency, plus the acquisition of the airline by the States of Guernsey, has altered the position.

‘EDC now believe that the interests of users can be best secured by facilitating competition.

‘For as long as the Air Transport Licensing Law remains in force, applicants for a permit will still be required.

But the presumption should be that all applications will be granted.

Economic Development’s wish to repeal the Island’s air permit law is part of a broader effort to stimulate competition in Jersey.

The committee is bringing a competition law to the States later this year, which if approved will essentially render the licensing law illegal.

Other prompts for adopting an ‘open skies’ policy include increasing competition for tourists from other destinations and the decline of charter flights to and from the Island, which puts greater emphasis on promoting year-round scheduled services.

opies of the revised air transport policy statement can be obtained by telephoning the EDC’s strategic development department on 603711 or by e-mailing b.



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