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Volume 14,Issue 3 Autumn 2012

Subsidy to regional airlines, small airports sent for comments


Copies of the draft of the proposed Management Measures for Subsidy of Regional Airlines and Subsidy of Medium and Small Civil Aviation Airports have been sent for discussion to interested parties in China. The measures would expand the air route network of airlines to second- and third-line cities, especially in undeveloped regions. Currently,s domestic air passenger flow is highly centralized at three big hub airports-- Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou--and some trunk air routes. Almost a hundred Chinese airports have serious insufficient use rate, including 50 airports which have fewer than 200 passengers of daily traffic. Because of low demand and high operation cost, airlines refuse to add and open regional flights to medium and small airports. The low passenger demand is bleeding small and medium airports. The planned subsidy to small and medium airports would be given to undeveloped areas. The subsidy to airlines would be awarded to airlines that will open air routes linking with the central and west China areas, former military base areas, areas inhabited by minorities, remote and border areas and poverty-stricken areas, tourism areas, and air routes linking with regional hub airports and regional airports. Last year, the China northwest area was listed by the Civil Aviation Administration of China as a regional aviation subsidy test area. The four representative air routes--Xi’an-Yan’an, Xi’an-Ankang, Xining-Geermu, and Xi’an-Qingyang-Lanzhou--gained policy subsidy. So far, the flight volume of the four air routes has doubled.

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