A top US official says the European Union is expected to issue a definitive ruling on the proposed transatlantic open skies by June. Speaking at the 26th annual New York Airfinance conference, US state department deputy assistant secretary John Byerly said the final draft of the open skies accord had been issued and is under consideration.

If adopted, the agreement will protect open skies accords the USA already has with individual EU states, and remove “market distorting restrictions” such as the oligopoly at London Heathrow established under the UK-US bilateral agreement known as Bermuda 2.

“We are ready to sign,” said Byerly, noting that an official ceremony could occur when President Bush meets EU officials in Vienna this year.

Source: Flight International