Beijing regrets Washington’s decision to suspend flights of Chinese airlines to the United States. The Civil Aviation Administration of the People’s Republic of China made a strict presentation to the US Ministry of Transport in this regard, spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry Zhao Lijiang said at a briefing on Thursday.
“China regrets this decision. According to available information, the PRC Civil Aviation Authority has already made a strict submission to the US Department of Transportation,” the diplomat said.
At the same time, Zhao Lijian said that the PRC Civil Aviation Administration and the US Ministry of Transport maintain close contacts on the organization of air communication between the two countries, and they have already managed to achieve some progress in this area.
“To date, China has already published its adjusted policy (in the field of international air traffic against the backdrop of an improvement in the epidemiological situation – ed.), We hope that the United States will not obstruct the solution of this problem,” he stressed.
The US Department of Transportation on Wednesday said it would cease all scheduled Chinese airline passenger services to and from the country on June 16. The Office noted that this decision was made in response to the inability of the Chinese government to ensure that American carriers fully realize their bilateral right to operate scheduled passenger flights to and from China.
In late January, amid the spread of COVID-19, US authorities banned the entry of citizens of several countries who had visited China two weeks before but did not impose any restrictions on Chinese airlines. In February, most American carriers voluntarily decided to suspend all passenger flights to China, and by the middle of the month the number of flights between the two countries had dropped to 20, only Chinese airlines performed them.
In March, as part of the fight against the spread of the epidemic, the Civil Aviation Administration of the PRC demanded that foreign airlines leave only one direction to China and operate one flight a week, and demanded that Chinese air carriers leave only one route with each state and also carry out no more than one flight per week. Also, to prevent the import of COVID-19 into the country, the authorities banned all foreigners from entering on valid visas, except for diplomats and some other categories of people.
However, on Thursday, the department announced that all foreign airlines that could not operate international flights to China due to the epidemic will be able to fly to one of 37 Chinese cities once a week from June 8, including Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, and Wuhan. For this, air carriers must apply the management and agree on a flight plan for the selected airport.