JAPAN: New US-Japan agreement

US and Japan have agreed, after four years of discussions, to expand their air services agreement for the fi rst time in a decade in a move that will provide additional access for direct passenger and cargo fl ights and connecting services to other parts of Asia. The expanded agreement will give cargo carriers in […]


US and Japan have agreed, after four years of discussions, to expand their air services agreement for the fi rst time in a decade in a move that will provide additional access for direct passenger and cargo fl ights and connecting services to other parts of Asia.

The expanded agreement will give cargo carriers in the fast-growing transpacifi c market additional opportunities as well as limited expansion for passenger services.

UPS for instance, will be able to add six daily fl ights to Nagoya to its existing daily services to Tokyo and Osaka, and connect these to its regional hub in Shanghai. Polar Air Cargo on the other hand is being allowed to start services to Osaka.

Japan has long resisted US efforts to press for an “open skies” agreement but said more talks aimed at further liberalisation are slated for no later than one year from now.

The Japan is under increasing pressure from the emergence of competing airports in China and South Korea which could capture some of the transpacifi c traffi c now traveling through Tokyo, while new longer-range aircraft can also fly more direct services between North America and Asia.

Japan has also indicated its intention to expand access for Asian carriers to regional airports outside Tokyo, under its Asian Gateway Plan to boost tourist and business links with the region.