Beijing, Jun 4 (efe-epa).- China is set to increase the number of international flights arriving from countries such as Japan, Australia, Canada and the United States from Jun.8 onwards, Civil Aviation Administration of China said on Thursday.
The civil aviation authority of the country said that in order to push international travel, essential for economic recovery, foreign airlines that were not a part of the CAAC list, released in March, will be allowed to fly one international flight to China each week.
These flights will cover 32 Chinese cities, including Beijing, Guangzhou (southeast), Harbin (northeast), Nanjing (east), Shanghai (east), Shenzhen (south), Xian (central) and Wuhan (central-east), among others.
CAAC added that it would implement a mechanism based on reward and punishment for airlines, where if the carrier does not transport people found to have the coronavirus for a period of three consecutive weeks, they will be permitted to operate more flights.
However, if a flight carries more than five passengers who test positive for the novel coronavirus, the airline will have to suspend their operation for a week, and if it carries more than 10, it will have to stop operation for four weeks.
Towards the end of March, the CAAC implemented a policy allowing every airline to operate only on a single route in a week from each country, thus limiting the number of weekly flights to 134.
Later, CAAC deputy head Li Jian announced that China would ease restrictions on international flights in phases and added that from Jun.1 onwards, 407 weekly flights would be allowed. However, he anticipated this number would be much lesser owing to low demand.
Previously, the civil aviation authority had announced it would allow green channels for certain airlines to operate between China and eight other countries, namely Japan, South Korea, Singapore, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy and Switzerland.
These flights would carry employees of overseas companies that operate in China.
Since March, China has been able to drastically reduce the number of fresh Covid-19 infections at the community level, following strict preventive measures and restriction on movement in order to contain the epidemic.
However, since then, there have been reports of a few “imported” cases, most of them concerning people who returned to China from other countries that have been severely affected by the coronavirus.
Several prevention measures and movement restrictions have been relaxed in recent weeks, although the authorities have maintained a ban on the entry of foreigners, including those residing in China, with a few exceptions. EFE-EPA