Grenada has signed a new Open Skies Air Transport agreement, which is expected to bring increased economic activity to the island via the Maurice Bishop International Airport (MBIA).
The agreement, signed last week between Tourism and Civil Aviation Minister Dr. Clarice Modeste-Curwen and the Principal Officer at the United States Embassy in Grenada, Stephen Frahm, is expected to further strengthen the civil aviation partnership, and deepen commercial and economic ties between the two countries.
According to Frahm, the new open skies air transport agreement replaces with immediate effect, an older, more restrictive air transport agreement, permitting greater opportunities for airlines, travelers, businesses, shippers, airports and localities, by allowing unrestricted reciprocal market access for passenger and cargo airlines to fly between the two countries.
“The agreement will create some exciting possibilities that will not only increase our transportation ties but also open up other economic opportunities as well,” Frahm said, noting that it also engages both governments with high standards of safety and security in future travel and commerce.
Dr. Modeste-Curwen said she was looking forward to the implementation of the agreement since the newly installed Keith Mitchell-led government is optimistic about the great potential it can bring to the country, especially in the area of trade and commerce.
The female minister expressed confidence that “if managed right, the agreement can bring more economic benefits (to the country) as it permits greater opportunities and (for more) partnerships to be established”.
“…That augurs well for the transport of people and cargo trade (and) we (government), are looking for other opportunities to increase trade with the U.S.,” the tourism minister said, adding that “we (officials at the Maurice Bishop International Airport (MBIA) have been making efforts to prepare ourselves for more activities; economic and otherwise.”
Over the years, the island’s export trade in agricultural crops was affected by limited cargo space on international airlines using MBIA.