MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines and Ethiopia have entered into an air services agreement covering flights between the two countries.
“The Philippines and Ethiopia signed yesterday in Manila an Air Services Agreement (ASA) that defined the aviation relationship and the exchange of traffic rights between the two countries,” Civil Aeronautics Board executive director Carmelo Arcilla said in a text message.
The agreement allows seven flights per week between Manila and Ethiopia and unlimited flights between Ethiopia and other airports in the Philippines except the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
The agreement likewise allows intermediate stops in Singapore, Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh, India and the Middle East.
Ethiopia initiated the move to hold air talks with the Philippines as it looks to expand in Asia.
Ethiopian Airlines currently has flights to Hong Kong, Beijing, Guanzhou, Shanghai, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Seoul.
Arcilla said that while the current traffic between the Philippines and Ethiopia is small, the ASA is expected to open new connectivities between the Philippines and Africa, including the Middle East, given Ethiopia’s location in North East Africa.
Ethiopia, which is the aviation hub in North East Africa, serves as a transit point for passengers from other African countries and the Middle East.
“The agreement therefore offers opportunities for the enhancement of our air connectivity and the development of our aviation network, especially that Africa is an emerging market and growth area,” Arcilla said.
Aside from Ethiopia, the Philippines has concluded air talks with France, Singapore, New Zealand, Myanmar, Canada, Macau and South Africa this year.
Last year, the Philippines signed air agreements with Japan, Macau, Brazil, Australia, Israel, and Italy.