The outcome of recent talks between Qatar and the US on civil aviation would help pave the way for “fair competition” among major stakeholders in the global airline industry, a senior US embassy official has said.
Charge d’Affaires Ryan Gliha of the US embassy in Doha said Qatar and US authorities had reached an understanding on addressing the concerns raised by both country’s airline industries.
“The US came to an agreement with the Qatar Civil Aviation Authority on putting to rest the ongoing controversy under the Open Skies agreement about subsidies and other sorts of criticisms that the American airline industry had been making towards the Qatari airline industry,” Gliha told reporters during a press conference in Doha on Thursday.
“We’re very happy to have this conclusion and agreement with the Qatari government on this and that’s satisfactory to our government, the Qatari government, and the industries of both countries. It’s creating a fair competition between everyone’s airline industry and that’s good for both industries, and also the consumers that are using all these services,” he added.
Gliha said the understanding on civil aviation was among the highlights of the topics discussed during the inaugural US-Qatar Strategic Dialogue held in Washington DC on January 30.
During the dialogue, HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani and US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson welcomed the outcome of the recent discussions on civil aviation aimed at ensuring healthy competition in the global aviation sector, while maintaining the Open Skies framework of US international aviation policy.
Aside from aviation, the dialogue focused on the strength of Qatar-US bilateral relationship and the mutually beneficial opportunities for the peoples of both countries to deepen co-operation. It also established a common vision for the future of the Qatar-US strategic partnership, and a shared commitment to advance global peace and prosperity.
Gliha stressed that the inaugural Strategic Dialogue, which tackled areas of mutual concern and opportunity on topics such as political co-operation, defence, counterterrorism, and trade and investment, was a “symbol of the last several years of the US and Qatar drawing closer together on different fronts.”
“It is also the best example of the shifting the US-Qatar relationship to a real strategic level…the participation of several cabinet-level officials from both sides is a very real tangible example of how important the US government considers the relationship with Qatar,” he said, adding that other topics that were discussed included education, culture, and science.