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US Carriers Request Halt on More China Flights, Citing Unfair Advantage Amid Ukraine Crisis

Daniel Kim Views  

Yonhap News

Major U.S. airlines are urging the Biden administration to suspend additional approvals for Chinese flights between China and the U.S.

According to Reuters, on the 11th (local time), Airlines for America (A4A), which includes members like American Airlines Group, Delta Airlines, and United Airlines, sent a letter to the Department of Transportation and the State Department. The letter stated, “U.S. flights have been at a disadvantage since Russia’s airspace was closed in March 2022 due to the war in Ukraine, while Chinese flights continue to pass through Russian airspace, making fair competition difficult.” They requested a halt to additional passenger flights between the U.S. and China until fair competition is possible. The letter was also joined by unions such as the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), Allied Pilots Association (APA), and the Communications Workers of America (CWA), according to Reuters.

Previously, in February, the U.S. Department of Transportation announced that Chinese airlines could increase round-trip passenger flights to the U.S. from 35 to 50 per week starting March 31. U.S. airlines are concerned that the Biden administration may allow Chinese airlines to double their flights to as many as 100 per week, Reuters reported.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, each side of U.S. and Chinese airlines was allowed 150 flights per week.

Separately from this letter, Mike Gallagher, chairman of the U.S. House China Task Force (Republican), and Task Force Secretary Raja Krishnamoorthi (Democrat) also sent a letter to the Biden administration urging them not to allow more flights “until China adheres to the existing bilateral agreement and passenger demand recovers.”

They emphasized that “Chinese airlines enjoying anti-competitive commercial benefits should not be allowed to increase flights in a state of inequality with U.S. airlines” and that “U.S. passengers should not be exposed to unnecessary security threats by passing through Russian airspace.”

Daniel Kim
content@viewusglobal.com

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