Airports & Tourism organisations applaud EU-Qatar aviation agreement

20 March 2019

Brussels -  As the ink dries on the initialisation of the EU-Qatar aviation agreement, the European airport industry and Tourism sector today hailed the moment as important to the further expansion of air connectivity for Europe’s airports and the communities they serve.

This agreement provides for a balanced & progressive lifting of restrictions for airlines to fly between the EU and Qatar - a major global aviation player – and also includes appropriate safeguards to ensure fair competition. This will facilitate the development of new air services, providing increased benefits for consumers and supporting the economy - in particular tourism on both sides.

Recalling their joint position in favour of ‘Open Skies’ released in 2015¹, ACI EUROPE and the European Travel Commission (ETC) underlined their support for the agreement initialed today. They also stated their hope for more such agreements with other EU trading partners going forward.

Olivier Jankovec, Director General ACI EUROPE commented “Europe’s airports rely on open skies to attract airlines and develop their route network. This is about enhancing connectivity for our communities and providing more choice for consumers. Today’s EU-Qatar aviation agreement is an important step in the implementation of the EU Aviation Strategy. Crucially, it signals that Europe remains committed to a liberal and open aviation policy - with consumer interest & wider economic benefits at the forefront.”

Eduardo Santander, Executive Director, European Travel Commission commented “The Tourism industry highly welcomes the EU-Qatar aviation agreement. Air connectivity has a strategic relevance for the European tourism & travel sector with air transport being the only way for most international tourists to get into Europe. Liberalization of the aviation market is essential to maintain Europe’s number 1 position as a tourist destination and ensure the continued contribution of the sector to the European economy”.

  • Note to editors

    ¹The joint publication entitled European Airports & Tourism Organisations: Together on Open Skies is available for download here.
    *Research by Intervistas has shown that every 10% increase in air connectivity generates a 0,5% increase in GDP per capita.
    For more information about the European airport industry, visit:
    For more information about the European Tourism sector, visit: