Passenger flights between Taiwan and Canada are projected to increase by 61 percent within two years following the signing of a new aviation pact between the two countries yesterday. The pact was inked by Taiwan’s Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) Director-General Jean Shen (沈啟) and Canadian Trade Office in Taipei Executive Director Kathleen Mackay.
Aside from increasing the number of passenger flights, the agreement has lifted the cap on cargo flights and listed relevant clauses on aviation safety.
“This arrangement recognizes the ongoing demand for the transport of people and goods between Canada and Taiwan, and reflects a desire to improve upon our strong long-term economic and people-to-people relationships,” Mackay said in a statement.
According to the CAA, the previous aviation pact between the two nations allowed Taiwanese carriers to offer a total of 13 flights per week, including both passenger and cargo flights.
Currently, China Airlines (CAL) flies seven passenger flights to Vancouver, and EVA Airways (EVA) dispatches three passenger flights to Vancouver and three to Toronto.
Under the new agreement, passenger flights dispatched from both sides would increase to 17 per week.
In addition to removing the restrictions on cargo flights, the agreement allows Taiwanese carriers to carry goods from Canada and transport them to a third country.
CAA statistics showed that the average occupancy rate for flights to Canada was about 84 percent.
Taiwan’s Tourism Bureau said that the Canadian government waived the visa requirements for Taiwanese in 2010, which has helped increase the number of tourists traveling between the two countries to 137,0000 last year.
Both CAL and EVA said that they are assessing the possibility of increasing the flights to Canada.