HC Deb 20 November 2002 vol 394 c181W
Tom Brake

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make a statement on progress towards an open skies agreement with the United States; what discussions have taken place or are planned; what representations have been received. [81407]

Mr. Jamieson

Having earlier rejected UK proposals for the full liberalisation of the UK-US aviation market, in September the US Government rejected UK proposals for a partial liberalisation of the market. Although the US Government has not put forward any counter-proposals, they have indicated that for a limited deal to be acceptable it would have to include unrestricted fifth freedom rights for all-cargo services. They would not, however, be ready to open up the US domestic market to competition.

The Secretary of State has asked for further work to be carried out on the possible impact on such a deal on UK airlines and UK business. We are involving a number of interests in this work.