Flag carrier Nepal Airlines Corporation (NAC) flight to neighboring country China is revamping as recent talks between officials from both country has been positive.
Official from Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoCTCA) stated that flag carrier will be operating to Chinese city within a month or two.
In 2002, it was mentioned in the review of old bilateral agreement that Nepalese airlines can conduct up to 14 flights weekly. Now the corporation will be operating commercially to China as per bilateral agreement reviewed on 2004.
Nepal Airlines will be operating form a month only in first phase.
In a contract between the two countries, it was agreed that both countries can operate equal number of flights. Though six airlines of China conduct 70 flights in a week to Nepal at present time, the corporation has not been able to operate flight to China due to lack of slot.
As per the ASA, Nepal can operate flights to 7 cities of China with total of 70 flights. The agreement includes flights to Beijing, Shanghai, Lhasa, Guangzhou, Kunming, Chengdu and Xian.
As per corporation official, currently, work of ‘Aeronautical Authority’ is in final phase and after completing the work of it along with slot management and safety procedure, the corporation will be operating flight to China. The corporation will initiate flights to Guangzhou and gradually increase flights to other 6 cities.
As per corporation, Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Lhasa are priority cities as they have business and tourism potential.
Corporation official stated that preparation to start flight to other cities has also reached final stage and they have presented documents as well, however the technical difficulty is causing delay in commencement of flight.
MoCTCA official also claimed that the flights to China will be commenced within a month and they have also made proposal to commence flights to Shanghai after Guangzhou.
The corporation asked for flight permission in Guangzhou, 4 years ago and has not yet received it.
NAC informed that the corporation will be permitted to operate flight in one city among Beijing and Shanghai.
At present, 6 airlines from China namely Air China, Cathay Dragon, China eastern, China Southern, Sichuan and Tibet Airlines are operating flights to Kathmandu. However, no any Nepali airlines are flying to China.
The corporation stated that the flight commencement to China would be helpful in supporting ‘Visit Nepal 2020’ Campaign.
Currently, the corporation has 2 wide-bodies Airbus A330 and 2 narrow-bodies Airbus A320 series aircraft for international flights operating flights to Delhi, Bangalore, Mumbai, Kuala lumpur, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Doha and Dubai. The corporation is also preparing to operate flights to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and in Seoul, South Korea. Corporation will be operating flights to Japan as well.