Wed, Feb 29, 2012 - Page 12 News List

Airlines urge more fairness in air rights

By Amy Su  /  Staff Reporter

The nation’s smaller international air carriers, such as TransAsia Airways Corp (復興航空) and Far Eastern Air Transport Co (FAT, 遠東航空), said the government should assign new routes more equitably and reasonably to develop a healthier environment for the sector.

Their request came after news that South Korea’s government has assigned the air rights between Gimpo International Airport in Seoul and Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) to two of its budget airlines, rather than the bigger Korean carriers.

TransAsia yesterday reiterated its determination to pursue the air rights for the Songshan-Gimpo route.

“We hope the government will learn from South Korea’s aviation policy and help domestic small and medium air carriers’ development,” TransAsia said in a statement.

TransAsia said the carrier has been focusing on the Songshan facility for a long time and that it was confident it could offer the most complete service to passengers on the route.

FAT also called for a fairer distribution of routes by the government to encourage the domestic airline sector’s development.

“The government should not favor certain airlines,” FAT said earlier this month.

Industry sources said the air rights for the Songshan-Gimpo route would be assigned to carriers that also operate on the route between Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport and Incheon International Airport.

The two carriers operating on the Taoyuan-Incheon route are China Airlines Ltd (CAL, 中華航空) and EVA Airways Corp (EVA, 長榮航空), Taiwan’s two largest airlines.

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