Wizz Air (W6, Budapest) chief executive József Váradi has accused the Israeli government of dithering in its implementation of the EU-Israel Open Skies agreement.

Speaking to the Yediot Ahronot newspaper, Varadi said Israel's leadership had bowed to pressure from local carriers seeking to block the Hungarian LCC from establishing a base at Tel Aviv Ben Gurion.

"We've already been holding talks for a long time with the government but we are not really moving forward," he said during a recent function. "Israel is a big and very important market for us, but the logistics are very problematic. The flights come from Central European destinations, which is very far for our sort of operations and so we need to open a base in Tel Aviv."

According to the ch-aviation capacity module, Wizz Air is Tel Aviv's fourth most prominent carrier by weekly seating capacity with 11,990 seats/week or a 4.43% market share. The largest is El Al Israel Airlines with 71,368 (26.36%) followed by Turkish Airlines with 12,937 (4.78%), and Aeroflot with 2,028 seats/week (4.44%).

Last year, Ryanair (FR, Dublin Int'l) touted the possibility of opening its first Middle Eastern base at Eilat's new Ramon International Airport, which is now due to open during the last quarter of this year.