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CAAC: Many Countries are Open to Resuming Flights when Situation Improves

2020/02/12

At a press conference given by the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) on Wednesday, Liang Nan, Director General of the CAAC Department of International Affairs, briefed the media on CAAC's cooperation with other countries since the novel coronavirus outbreak.

According to Liang, as of Tuesday, the civil aviation authorities of more than 40 countries have responded positively to CAAC, expressing appreciation and support for the epidemic control efforts in China.

- Ethiopia promised not to suspend flights;

- Cambodia voiced solidarity with the Chinese people in this trying time and pledged not to use executive means to ban or cut back flights;

- The UK, France, Germany, Japan, Denmark, Sweden and Norway, among others, clarified that they have not put any restrictions on aviation businesses through executive orders, and will continue to assess the situation;

- The US Department of Transportation approved two Air China flight routes, namely the Beijing-Los Angeles-San Francisco route and the Beijing-New York-Washington D.C. route, to raise air travel efficiency between the two countries at this special time;

- Russia decided to maintain direct flights between Moscow and Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou after assessing the quarantine capacity of its airports and will keep air travel open between the two countries;

- The United Arab Emirates promised to retain Beijing as a waypoint; and

- Flights to Pakistan were restored on 3 February with China Southern Airlines operating between Urumqi and Islamabad.

"Many countries said that their current restrictions are temporary and they will favorably consider resuming routes and flights once the situation gets better. Currently, domestic and overseas airlines continue to operate 710 international routes between China and 46 countries, with 2,610 passenger and cargo flights per week, connecting 120 cities on six continents," said Liang Nan.

For international routes affected by the epidemic, CAAC will touch base with its counterparts in relevant countries, strive to retain the traffic rights and time slots for airlines in each other's countries, work out solutions to the specific problems facing airlines at this special moment, and restore the routes as quickly as possible when market demand returns.

For countries which have suspended flights operated by Chinese airlines through executive directives, CAAC will work with China's Foreign Ministry for the normal operation of Chinese flights in accordance with international conventions and bilateral agreements, and ensure as much as possible air connections between China and other countries.

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