Agreement reached for resumption of flights between Tunis and the Emirates after 15-day suspension | Tunisia News Gazette

Agreement reached for resumption of flights between Tunis and the Emirates after 15-day suspension

The “Emirates Airline” has decided to resume flights to Tunis after about 15 days of suspension.

However, officials of the carrier at the Tunis Carthage Airport were reserved and refused any comment on the resumption of flights announced Thursday night, according to a TAP reporter who has also noted that no flight to the UAE is displayed at the airport Friday.

Officials of the Tunisian Office of Civil Aviation and Airports (OACA) confirmed the conclusion of an agreement between the Tunisian and Emirati authorities, noting, however, that technical procedures must be undertaken before the resumption of flights.

“For now, there is not a flight plan, but it may be that from tomorrow,” Emirates “can operate a Tunis-Dubai flight,” said an official of the OACA.

The agreement between the Tunisian and Emirati authorities stipulates the commitment of the Emirates Airline to abide by international regulations in force and the conventions signed between the two countries in the field of civil aviation, including that of April 23, 2000, said the Tunisian Ministry of Transport.

The department had indicated in a statement Thursday evening “the Emirates company is committed to avoiding anything that is likely to undermine the relations between the two peoples, while respecting the respective interests of both countries.

The decision to resume flights comes after the competent authorities of the United Arab Emirates lifted the preventive measures taken against Tunisian women.

In light of an extensive security dialogue and information received from the Tunisian side, the concerned authorities in the UAE have decided to return to normal procedures before the extraordinary circumstance, said the Emirati Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation.

Emirates Airline, which operated daily round-trip flights between Dubai and Tunis, suddenly decided on December 22, 2017 to ban Tunisian women from boarding its aircraft for “security reasons”, according to the Emirati diplomacy. This decision was described as humiliating and “discriminatory” by the UGTT.

Two days later, the Tunisian Ministry of Transport reacted by announcing a decision banning “Emirates Airline” from operating on Tunisian airports.

The ban on Tunisian women boarding Emirates flights to the Gulf countries has given free rein to the most absurd interpretations, in the absence of enlightenment, from the two countries on the real reasons for the prohibition measure.

The measure has also set fire to the powders on social networks and even raised fears about possible repercussions on the Tunisian community residing in the UAE, whose number is estimated at 30,000 people.

Fears have also been voiced on the web about the fate of Emirati mega-projects planned in Tunisia, including that of “Tunis Sport City” and the project “Bab Al Moutawaset” (Gate of the Mediterranean), known as “Sama Dubai”, name of the real estate company in charge of its realisation and belonging to the group “Dubai Holding”.

This project, which will be carried out in the Tunis southern lake, with an investment of about 25 million dollars, covers an area of more than 700 hectares and could generate between 150 and 200 thousand new jobs.

Works of this project which includes among other components, gigantic towers, hotel complexes and residential cities, are, unfortunately, have been blocked since 2008, despite the promises of Chief Real Estate Officer at Dubai Holding Khalid Al Malik in December 2015 to continue them from 2016.

The Tunis Sport City project, which has also been blocked since 2010 at a cost of $ 5 billion, provides for the development in the Tunis northern lake of high-class residential neighborhoods, sports academies and other sports areas and services.

President of Bukhatir Group Abdul Rahman Bukhatir had told reporters after a meeting with Prime Minister Youssef Chahed in March 2017 that the start of works will take place in six months.

The UAE is also a co-shareholder, through Emirates International Telecommunications (35% stake), in the capital of national operator Tunisie Telecom (TT).

The shares of EIT were sold to the Emirati group Abraaj, which has become TT’s new partner.

In terms of trade, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is the largest customer of Tunisia in the Gulf Co-operation Council countries zone (Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain) with a 65% share of Tunisia’s exports.

It is also Tunisia’s second largest supplier in this zone after Saudi Arabia with a 34% share of Tunisia’s imports.

The UAE accounted for 40% of Tunisia’s total trade with the Gulf Co-operation Council countries in 2016, according to CEPEX figures.

Source: TAP News Agency

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