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Indonesia to delay open sky talks with EU
Last Updated(Beijing Time):2007-12-20 12:57
The Indonesian government has linked open sky policy negotiations with the EU to the bloc's ban on Indonesian airplanes, effectively grounding the negotiations for the present, local press said Wednesday.

Transportation Minister Jusman Syafii Djamal has said a decision had been made to "stop all discussions temporarily before it (EU) lifts its ban," reported English-language daily The Jakarta Post.

He said that if Indonesia continued negotiations and reached an agreement with the EU, it would be unfair because EU airlines would be able to fly to Indonesia while Indonesia remained banned from the bloc.

"The ban is an obstacle to the open sky policy," the minister said Tuesday after discussing the matter with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

He added that, out of respect for the ban, his ministry was committed to give a positive response to EU findings and would try to make improvements.

"With or without the ban, we do plan to improve Indonesian airline performance because we want to restore our airlines' image," Jusman said.

The ban imposed by EU prevents 51 Indonesian airlines from entering the territory of the 27-nation bloc.

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