US administration moves to block Chinese airlines from flying to the United States
1 year ago Web Desk 0
The four airlines affected by the order are Air China, China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines and Xiamen Airlines.
According to CNN, the Transportation Department restrictions will take effect June 16 but could be enacted earlier if President Donald Trump decides to do so.
It says the Chinese government is violating an agreement between the two countries for international travel by preventing United Airlines and Delta Air Lines from resuming the trans-oceanic flights. Those airlines had reportedly asked to resume service on June 1.
United, Delta, and American suspended service to China due to the coronavirus pandemic. The US government also instituted travel restrictions to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.
The Transportation Department order said “Chinese aviation authorities have failed to permit US air carriers to” operate the routes they previously flew.
“The Department will continue to engage our Chinese counterparts so both U.S. and Chinese carriers can fully exercise their bilateral rights,” the department said in a statement. “In the meantime, we will allow Chinese carriers to operate the same number of scheduled passenger flights as the Chinese government allows ours.”
“We support and appreciate the U.S. government’s actions to enforce our rights and ensure fairness,” Delta spokeswoman Lisa Hanna said, according to The Associated Press (AP).
United Airlines spokesman Frank Benenati reported said, “We look forward to resuming passenger service between the United States and China when the regulatory environment allows us to do so.”
AP says that before the pandemic, there were about 325 passenger flights a week between the United States and China, including ones operated by United, Delta and American Airlines. While U.S. carriers stopped their flights, Chinese airlines continued to fly scaled-down schedules between the two countries — 20 flights a week in mid-February and 34 a week by mid-March.
Source: Asia Plus