French Ambassador to Kazakhstan calling for exclusion of Air Astana from EU black list 10 апреля 2012, 20:06
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Air Astana plane. Photo courtesy of the company's press-service
Ambassador of France to Kazakhstan is calling for exclusion of Air Astana from the UE black list. Jean-Charles Berthonnet made the official statement on April 9, Tengrinews.kz reports.
The Ambassador said that keeping Air Astana in EU black list was not quite understandable for him, especially since the air company will receive 6 new Airbus A-320 planes during several years starting from this year.
“However, these planes will not be able to fly along the permitted Air Astana routes to the EU airports, as they have not been included into the special list of the airlines allowed into the EU. Air fleet of Air Astana consists of modern planes made in OECD countries and Brazil. I frequently fly Air Astana in Kazakhstan or to France (via Frankfurt). I feel totally safe, I’m pleased with on-board service, it offers the same quality as any other airline of a developed country does,” the Ambassador said.
According to the diplomat, the presidents of both countries have initiated negotiations between Air France and Air Astana to open a direct connection between Paris and Astana.
“Keeping Air Astana in black or grey list will significantly complicate this process. I hope that this paradoxical situation when an air carrier that already flies to EU is not allowed to develop in this area will be solved as soon as possible,” he added.
The press-release of the European Commission was published on April 4. It states that Kazakhstan companies (with the exception of one carrier which operates under restrictions and conditions) and another 278 companies from 21 countries got into the black list of the European Union .
However, according to the official list of air carriers banned from the EU, Air Astana is the very Kazakhstan company that the phrase "with the exception of one carrier" refers to. So this is most likely that the Ambassador was calling to list restrictions and conditions from Air Astana in his April 9 statement.