The Honourable Lisa Raitt, Canada’s Minister of Transport, was in Israel today to sign an Air Transport Agreement, a Declaration of Intent on Aviation Security, and a Memorandum of Understanding on transportation with Mr. Yisrael Katz, Israel’s Minister of Transport and Road Safety.

The new Air Transport Agreement expands Canada’s air transport relationship with Israel by providing substantial operating flexibility for airlines in both countries to offer greater service options for travelers and shippers. Specifically, the agreement will allow any number of Canadian and Israeli airlines to offer air services to any city in Canada and Israel, it will increase the number of permitted flights for passenger and cargo services, and it will provide airlines the ability to introduce new prices more quickly, among other advantages.

The Declaration of Intent on Aviation Security formalizes Transport Canada’s cooperation with Israel on aviation security issues of mutual concern. It provides the basis for an ongoing exchange of information with Israel on these issues and is a key component of the Strategic Partnership Memorandum of Understanding signed during Prime Minister Harper’s January 2014 visit to Israel.

Finally, the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the Field of Transportation provides a valuable framework for sharing best practices and lessons learned between both departments and will help to identify opportunities for Canadian and Israeli commercial interests in the sector.

While in Israel, the Minister also held key bilateral meetings with her Israeli counterparts and senior Canadian business leaders established in Israel, to advance bilateral cooperation, share experiences, as well as discuss policy challenges and approaches.