Thursday, June 07, 2018

Nepal-India talks on air routes next week

A technical delegation from the Airports Authority of India (AAI) is scheduled to arrive in Nepal on June 14 to discuss cross-border airspace issues that have been pending for the last five years, Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (Caan) officials said.
Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (Caan) officials said.

The Indian team will be led by Anil Kumar Dutta, member of Air Navigation Services and board member of the AAI. The two sides will discuss three key cross-border routes that Nepal has sought from India: Janakpur in the eastern, Nepalgunj in the mid-western and Mahendranagar in the far western regions.

Nepal asked India to formally open the new cross-border air routes during Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Kathmandu in 2014. The proposed bi-directional or incoming and outgoing air routes will facilitate the operation of international flights from Bhairahawa, Pokhara and Nijgadh airports. “We don’t know about the mandate that the Indian delegation has been entrusted with by its government, but we are prepared to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) if the discussions yield a positive outcome,” said a high-level Caan official. “If the MoU is signed during this meeting, it will open the door for both sides to conduct a safety assessment of the proposed routes soon.”
07/06/18 Sangam Prasain/eKantipur