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Dublin: 10 °C Thursday 21 June, 2018
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Dublin could soon have a direct flight to...Addis Ababa

The deal, if it goes ahead, could be the first of many instances of non-EU airlines using Ireland as a stopover hub en route to the US.

Image: AP/Press Association Images

THERE COULD SOON be direct flights between Dublin and Addis Ababa, if a deal between the Government and Ethiopian Airlines goes ahead.

The arrangement could see flights from the Ethiopian capital stopping in Dublin Airport to pick up and drop off passengers en route to and from Los Angeles.

Under an arrangement known as ‘fifth freedom rights’, which allow flights from non-EU and non-US destinations to take on passengers at Irish airports before flying on to the US.

The news was first reported in this morning’s Irish Times.

The Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport confirmed that it has ‘initialled’ a bilateral transport agreement with the Ethiopia recently. A formal application has not been lodged with the Ethiopian national carrier yet, a Department spokesperson told TheJournal.ie. 

Last month, Shannon airport made a play to be prioritised for awarding of Fifth Freedom rights, as it “would assist in redressing the economic imbalance between Dublin and the remainder of the country”.

The western airport is understood to be pursuing similar deals to that between Dublin and Ethiopia, although it is not clear how close it is to sealing a new route.

In a research paper by Professor Jim Deegan of the University of Limerick Department of Economics recommended the “development of an International Aviation Services Centre and other related activities such as a centre of excellence for business aviation” at Shannon.

Read: Ryanair has launched five new routes from Shannon>

Read: There were 1,613 flights in Irish airspace on last month’s busiest day>

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Jack Horgan-Jones

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