Mauritius has signed yesterday a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and a Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA) with Germany for enhanced air links between the two countries. The signature ceremony was held at the Treasury Building in Port Louis.
The signatories were Dr Mirka Jelinek, Assistant Head of Division International Air Transport, Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure from the German side and Mr Sateeaved Seebaluck, Secretary to Cabinet and Head of Civil Service, from the Mauritian side.
In her speech, Dr Jelinek highlighted the excellent bilateral relations between Mauritius and Germany while adding that these two agreements will enable the aviation sector to meet future challenges.
For his part, M. Seebaluck pointed out that Germany is one of the most promising markets for Mauritius, and that German tourists like to come to Mauritius. He recalled that last year. Some 75 000 German tourists came to Mauritius, a number which is expected to increase with the new provisions of the agreements.
According to him, commerce and business between the two countries will also increase since the new connectivity will facilitate the movement of business people and investors to Mauritius and Germany.
The new agreements make provisions for multiple designation of airlines, 14 weekly frequencies to be operated by the designated airlines of each Contracting Party, code sharing with domestic flights, and the Mauritian airline to operate 10 points in Germany.
Air Services between Mauritius and Germany
Air Services between Mauritius and Germany are governed by the framework of a Bilateral Air Services Agreement concluded in 1974 and subsequently reviewed in 1995, 1997 and 2005.
Air Mauritius started its operations to Munich, Germany in April 1987 and to Frankfurt in November 1989. As part of its network rationalization, Air Mauritius ceased its services to Germany in 2012. However, under its cooperation agreement with Air France, Air Mauritius codeshares on Air France's flights via Paris to three points in Germany, namely Frankfurt, Munich and Dusseldorf.
In October 2015, Mauritius agreed to the request made by the German authorities to increase the number of weekly frequencies provided for in the existing Bilateral Air Services Agreement from six to ten and operate a leased aircraft on the Germany-Mauritius and vice-versa route for a period of six months.
Following the above decision, Condor and Lufthansa, the two designated airlines of Germany, are currently operating five and two weekly flights respectively to Mauritius.
In December 2015, the German authorities expressed the wish to hold a fresh round of air services negotiations with Mauritius with a view to modernizing the existing Bilateral Air Services Agreement and providing for a permanent extension of the traffic rights, particularly multiple designation of airlines and increase in the number of frequencies.