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Published on Sunday, May 24, 2020

US claims China is blocking airlines from resuming flights






The US is claiming the Chinese government is blocking US airlines' attempt to restart flight operations to China.


Both United and Delta Air Lines want to resume flights to China.


The global Covid-19 pandemic has severely affected US-China air traffic although Chinese airlines have continued to fly to the US, even with the US imposing restrictions on travelers who have recently visited China.


US officials said talks with China have failed to reach an agreement.


Due to the pandemic the Civil Aviation Authority of China initially permitted airlines to only fly once a week to one city in a single country based on current schedules in March.


This rule was brought in after US airlines had already suspended services, which effectively means they cannot restart services.


US officials have 'protested this situation to the Chinese authorities to let US carriers fully exercise their rights and to the denial to US carriers of their right to compete on a fair and equal basis.'


It has now ordered four Chinese airlines to submit flight schedules to officials by May 27 or it could take action including blocking flights.


Air China, China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines, and Hainan Airlines current operate flights to the US.


China has reportedly agreed to let US airlines resume flights but with strict limits until Covid-19 is firmly under control in the US.


It plans to continue restricting each carrier to a once-weekly service on a single route to China.

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