Silk Air to Fly to Kathmandu (Mon, 29 Oct 2007)

This is the first time after Visit Nepal Year (VNY) 1998 when a number of international airlines have begun operating here in a row,said Keshav Khanal, deputy director general at the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal.

According to him, a couple of airlines had started their operations simultaneously in Nepal in the run-up to the VNY.

Thanks to the on-going efforts for the restoration of peace and prospects of a sound political climate, international airlines have once again begun taking Nepal as a promising market, he said.

According to him, the increase in the number of international airlines has given a boost to the aviation and tourism sectors.

On Friday, the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) had given the Korean Air the green light to begin its operations.

"For now, the airline's Boeing 777 will fly once a week on the Seoul-Kathmandu sector," Khanal said.

Earlier, the airline was planning to begin a chartered flight on the sector, he said. "The increase in the number of air operations here means increase in the number of tourists. The aviation boom will give a boost to the tourism sector and the economy," said Yagya Gautam, joint-secretary at the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation.

The government has also given a green light to the Orient Thai and Etihad Airways to fly to Nepal, he said.

The government is reviewing China Southern Airlines' application to fly on the Guangzhou-Kathmandu sector. Air Arabia from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has been operating on the Sharjah-Kathmandu line since November 7, while the GMG Airlines from Bangladesh has been operating on the Dhaka-Kathmandu line since October 23.

Around 13 international airlines have been operating in Nepal. Nepal Airlines Corporation, the country's flag carrier, has been operating on the international sector.

"Nepal has signed Air Service Agreements (ASAs ) with 35 countries," he added.

Source: Xinhua

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