The Transport Council authorised the Commission to open negotiations with Australia on a comprehensive air transport agreement on 13 June 2008. The negotiations were opened on 27-28 November 2008 in Brussels.
The EU-Australia horizontal agreement (" Agreement between the European Community and the Government of Australia on certain aspects of air services") was signed on 29 April 2008 and entered into force on 2 July 2009.
Due to the geographical distance between Europe and Australia, aviation is a key enabler for the EU's overall relations with Australia. Australia shares the EU’s market-driven and consumer-oriented approach to aviation policy. Australia, which has already signed a “horizontal agreement” with the EU, is among the most advanced nations in its region and globally with regard to the regulatory framework for aviation and market liberalisation.
The EU-Australia negotiations on a comprehensive air transport agreement aim at a reciprocal opening of market access within a framework that ensures fair competition and high standards of safety, security and environmental protection. The agreement will bring economic benefits to air carriers, airports, passengers, the tourism industry and the wider economy both within the EU and in Australia.
A Joint Statement by Australian Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Anthony Albanese and Vice President of the European Commission and Commissioner for Transport Antonio Tajani, Brussels [13 KB]