U.S. and Britain reach post-Brexit aviation deal

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London's Heathrow Airport.
London's Heathrow Airport. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

The U.S. and U.K. have reached an agreement that will maintain open commercial aviation access between the two countries after the U.K leaves the European Union. 

The deal "ensures that planes flying from the U.K. will continue to enjoy the same access they currently have with the U.S.," said the U.K. Department for Transport in a statement.

The two countries have been in talks over the matter for more than a year. Currently, U.K. and U.S. airlines enjoy unfettered access to fly between the two countries under the open skies agreement that the U.S. and EU secured in 2007. Assuring that such access remains in place after Britain departs the EU has been a priority for airlines as well as the governments of both nations.

In a statement, trade group Airlines for America (A4A) applauded the deal, saying that it will provide the legal framework for the more than 20 million passengers who fly annually between the U.S. and U.K.

"Today's announcement provides much needed certainty that when the U.K. exits the European Union there will be no disruption to air service for the traveling and shipping public," said A4A CEO Nick Calio. "Continued connectivity also will benefit the 720,000 men and women employed by the U.S. airline industry."

The U.K.'s departure from the EU is scheduled to take place on March 29.

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