China and US’ negotiations on easing limits on flights between the two countries might experience a roadblock after the latter expressed doubt that its airlines might be delegated to less attractive landing and take-off slots.
Travel demand among Chinese population is expected to go up substantially which is likely to offer a huge business opportunity for airlines from both the countries, reported Reuters.
However, most of China’s airports are already reaching their capacity that would restrict the possibility of good slots.
“In the past, the Chinese side was not as enthusiastic as the Americans when it came to market liberalisation because we didn’t need that many flights.”
Unnamed US officials said that China had offered to allow an increase in the number of flights to and from Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, while decreasing caps for other domestic cities during exploratory talks held in Washington in May.
Claimed to be the first in four years, the talks were said to have ended with US refusing to continue the dialogue due to China’s move at giving the more attractive slots to domestic airlines.
A senior Chinese aviation official said: “In the past, the Chinese side was not as enthusiastic as the Americans when it came to market liberalisation because we didn’t need that many flights. But it’s the other way around now.”
US is said to be waiting for a response from China currently and has also asked the country to follow International Air Transport Association (IATA) guidelines to accommodate more flights in spite of congestion.
China’s aviation regulator did not respond to requests for comment on the report.