AIRLINES

Times Staff and Wire Reports

U.S. to Sign 'Open Sky' Pacts: The formal agreements liberalizing air travel with nine European countries are expected to be signed within the next week or two, Transportation Secretary Federico Pena said. Speaking to reporters at a conference of European transport ministers, he said he is confident that nations that have defied European Union opposition to the agreements will soon be ready to sign formal pacts. Six small EU states--Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Luxembourg and Sweden--and three non-EU states--Norway, Iceland and Switzerland--initialed accords earlier this year to end restrictions on bilateral air services.

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