• U.S.

Japan: Oseibo from the U.S.

2 minute read

The U.S. last week granted Japan the right to do what no U.S. airline may do: fly around the world through New York City, the No. 1 source of lucrative, long-distance air traffic. A civil air agreement, signed in Tokyo by American Ambassador Edwin O. Reischauer and Japanese Foreign Minister Etsusa-buro Shiina, will allow Japan Air Lines to extend its existing transpacific service from San Francisco to New York and beyond. JAL announced plans to begin twice-weekly flights from Tokyo to New York and London next fall, hooking up with its existing London-Calcutta-Tokyo route.

The Japanese, who have been avidly seeking to rewrite their air treaty with the U.S., greeted the pact as a welcome oseibo (year-end gift). Tapping New York, said JAL President Shizuma Matsuo, “means the greatest aviation right in the world.” In return, Japan gave up its unused rights to fly to Seattle and to carry West Coast passengers and cargo to Central and South America, will allow U.S. airlines to serve Osaka, Japan’s second largest city and the site for the 1970 World’s Fair. Japan also agreed to drop its recent restriction on U.S. all-cargo flights through Tokyo.

Japan Air Lines will become only the third foreign carrier (after Australia’s Qantas and Britain’s BOAC) both to fly across the U.S. and to fly all the way around the world. The U.S.’s Trans World Airlines has no service across the Pacific; Pan American cannot fly across the U.S. Aviation circles, however, expect that Pan Am will now press its long-standing application to Washington for cross-country rights.

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