KATHMANDU, July 26: China has agreed to designate eight new destinations in China for flights operated by Nepali airlines.
According to a press release issued by Embassy of Nepal in Beijing, the two sides signed a Memorandum of Understanding to this effect.
The deal was reached during a two-day meeting between the representatives of the aeronautical authorities of Nepal and China earlier today, according to the press release.
Currently, Nepal can fly its carriers to seven destinations Beijing, Shanghai, Lhasa, Guangzhou, Kunming, Chengdu and Xi’an.
The embassy stated that the eight additional destinations will be specified by Nepal at its own discretion.
"The two sides also agreed to raise the frequency of flights to 98 flights per week from each country. For flights operated by China-designated airlines, 21 out of the agreed number of frequencies will be reserved for Gautam Buddha International Airport and Pokhara Regional International Airport, and will come into effect once the above-mentioned airports come into operation," the press release said.
Given the fact that there are no flights originating from Nepal to mainland China, the Nepali side during the meeting urged the Chinese side to extend necessary support and assistance to Nepali airlines to operate flights to destinations in China.
"The Chinese side responded positively to this proposal and agreed to extend necessary support and facilitation to Nepali airlines," said the press release.
During the meeting, the Chinese side agreed to expedite the process of issuing authorization to Nepal Airlines and Himalayan Airlines as per their applications for operating flights between Kathmandu to Guangzhou and Beijing, respectively.
The two sides also reached an understanding that after the development of adequate technical facilities at Gunsa Airport in Tibet, flights of Nepalese airlines would be allowed to land there while circumnavigating Mt. Kailash as part of the mountain flight.
During the meeting, the two sides agreed to promote mutual co-operation on air connectivity.
The two sides also agreed to explore opportunities in the field of civil aviation between the two countries through joint collaboration.
Joint Secretary at the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Suresh Acharya led the Nepali delegation while the Chinese side was led by Deputy Director General of Civil Aviation Administration of China, Bai Wenli.