(Asahi: January 22, 2016 – p. 7)
Japan and the U.S. will likely hold aviation talks in Tokyo from Feb. 9 to discuss again daytime landing and arrival slots at Tokyo’s Haneda airport, as they failed to clinch a deal in their previous talks in December. Once an agreement is reached, direct flight services to New York and other cities on the East Coast of the U.S. from Haneda will be available as early as this autumn.
Japan appears prepared to allocate a total of 10 round-trip slots a day, five each to Japanese and American airlines. In the previous talks, nine slots had been allocated. But an examination of the airport’s operability shows that it is possible to increase slots.
According to Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport officials, Japan explained in the previous aviation talks that a drastic increase above the current number of landing slots at Haneda by 2020 is possible. A senior official with the ministry said, “Our mutual understanding has deepened.” The two governments had confirmed that they will work hard to clinch a deal as soon as possible.
Delta Air Lines, which maintains a major hub at Narita International Airport, is reluctant to partly shift services to Haneda. Meanwhile, United Airlines and American Airlines are positive about increasing Haneda-bound flights. United and American expect their partnerships with All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines, respectively, to help them expand their reach into other Asian countries.