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More US carriers to China

US and China sign new aviation agreement

The number of daily passenger flights between the United States and China will more than double by 2012 and air cargo companies will have greatly expanded commercial freedom by 2011 as part of a…

The number of daily passenger flights between the United States and China will more than double by 2012 and air cargo companies will have greatly expanded commercial freedom by 2011 as part of a new civil aviation agreement reached by U.S. Secretary of Transportation Mary E. Peters and Chinese Minister of Civil Aviation Yang Yuanyuan.



“Piece by piece, we are making it easier, cheaper, and more convenient to fly people and ship goods between our two countries,” Secretary Peters said. “We both understand that the path to friendship and cooperation is paved with easy access and close connections.”



Secretary Peters traveled to China in April to continue talks on the previous civil aviation agreement, in place since 2004, and discuss a framework to increase future air passenger and cargo travel between the two countries.



The agreement, announced during the Strategic Economic Dialogue hosted by Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, is another demonstration of the Bush Administration’s commitment to expanding and opening new international aviation markets worldwide, Peters added.



Starting this year, Peters said, the new agreement will allow for 13 new daily flights operated by U.S. carriers to and from China within five years. One new daily flight will be added in 2007 and 2008, four new daily flights in 2009, three more daily flights in 2010, and two new daily flights in 2011 and 2012 for a total of 23 per day. Under the current agreement, U.S. airlines today can operate only 10 daily flights into Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou.



In addition, this agreement will allow the U.S. to designate three additional U.S. carriers to operate to China: one in 2007 and two in 2009. The deal also will provide U.S. cargo carriers with virtually unfettered access to Chinese markets by lifting all government-set limits on the number of cargo flights and cargo carriers serving the two countries by 2011, Secretary Peters added.



The Secretary also stated that, as part of this agreement, U.S. and Chinese officials have committed to resume negotiations in 2010 to establish a timetable to achieve the mutual objective of full liberalization.

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