5 February 2019 Qatar and the EU agreed to terms for an open skies agreement

On 5 February, the EU and Qatar concluded negotiations for a historic Comprehensive Air Transport Agreement. This agreement, that is the first of its kind between the EU and a Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member state, means that all air carriers from the 28 EU member states and Qatar now have unlimited and unrestricted access to their respective territories. The agreement was announced during the CAPA Qatar Aviation, Aeropolitical and Regulatory Summit in Doha, where Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, Mr. Akbar Al Baker and European Commission Director General Mobility and Transport, Mr. Henrik Hololei announced successful outcome of the negotiations. The agreement includes articles on fair competition, environment, consumer protection, social aspects, transparency and the inclusion of a doing-business provision, which exempts EU carriers from the obligation to hire a local General Sales Agent in QatarThe agreement is expected to be signed this year. Mr. Hololei shared that talks about a similar deal with Oman are set to start in March and that the UAE declined to engage in negotiations.