Dáil Éireann - Volume 618 - 03 May, 2006

Written Answers. - Air Services.

Mr. Deasy asked the Minister for Transport the position in relation to the completion of an [1310] open skies agreement between the EU and the US; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16263/06]

  Mr. Cullen:The European Commission and US authorities concluded the EU-US Aviation negotiations on Friday 18 November 2005. The Agreement was considered by the Transport Council in December 2005, where the text of the agreement received unanimous support. The Council observed that improvements in the US rules on ownership and control of airlines would be an essential element for a Stage One deal to be concluded. The US is revising it rules on ownership and control at present and expects to be in a position to publish these rules in the near future. The matter will then go before the Transport Council for final approval.

Question No. 83 answered with Question No. 70.

Mr. Penrose asked the Minister for Transport if regulations exist banning an airline from offering standing only passenger spaces on scheduled flights; and the action he proposes to strengthen regulations in this regard. [16242/06]

  Mr. Cullen:The Irish Aviation Authority has informed me that the current European regulations and aircraft certification standards require the provision of an approved seat and restraint system for each passenger.