Israel and Jordan have signed an agreement mutually allowing airlines to overfly both countries, the Israeli Ministry of Transport and Road Safety said in a statement.

"The agreement will significantly shorten flight times between the Gulf States, Asia, and the Far East to Europe and North America, lead to significant fuel savings, reduce pollutant emissions, and reduce the harm to the environment," the ministry said.

Until now, the lack of mutual recognition meant that airlines were not able to overfly both Jordan and Israel during the same flight, effectively forcing them to bypass both countries on most routes.

The Israeli authorities underlined that while negotiations were ongoing for several years, they accelerated recently due to the normalisation of ties between Israel on the one hand, and the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain on the other. This normalisation, in turn, opened the door to the launch of scheduled flights between the two Gulf states and Israel, which would overfly Saudi Arabia and Jordan. While Saudi Arabia still formally does not recognise Israel and maintains no official relations with Tel Aviv, it has already permitted overflights of aircraft heading to Bahrain and the UAE "from all directions", implicitly conceding to services from Israel.

Jordan's agreement with Israel is politically less charged than deals with the Gulf states because Amman has recognised Israel since 1994.