DPP lawmaker pushing for Hualien-Seoul flights

CNA , Taipei

Tue, Jul 20, 2004 - Page 4

A Democratic Progressive Party legislator said yesterday that he will urge the Ministry of Trans-portation and Communica-tions to promote a regular charter flight service between Hua-lien and Seoul.

Legislator Lu Po-kee (盧博基) made the remarks at a news conference to mark the full booking of three charter flights to Seoul.

Travel agencies said that they had originally planned two flights, but because of the enthusiastic response from the public, an additional flight was added.

The full bookings underlines the huge potential of tourism markets in both places, they added.

Lu said that in line with the government's goal to double tourist arrivals by 2008, he will ask the ministry to help promote trade opportunities in South Korea, and promote regular charter flights between the two countries to effectively help tour-ism operators tap the market.

Lu noted that since Hualien Airport opened to chartered flight services in October 2001, 16 charter flights have been completed.

With the popularity of South Korean TV drama programs in Taiwan, traveling to South Korea has become a fad here, he said.

Korean Air last year sent a team to Hualien to assess the situation and took the initiative to offer six charter services, but the proposal was ditched because the government said that there was no diplomatic relations between the two countries, which he said dealt a blow to Hualien tourism operators.