Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Cambodia Airways vows to expand despite upheaval of global industry

Cambodia Airways vows to expand despite upheaval of global industry

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Cambodia Airways Co Ltd has committed to expanding it business by connecting the Kingdom to other parts of the world once the Covid-19 pandemic comes to an end. Heng Chivoan

Cambodia Airways vows to expand despite upheaval of global industry

Cambodia Airways Co Ltd has committed to expanding it business by connecting the Kingdom to other parts of the world once the Covid-19 pandemic comes to an end.

Chairman Chen Bo said this on Tuesday in a meeting with State Secretariat of Civil Aviation secretary of state Mao Havannall.

Chen said the ongoing health crisis has dealt a crushing blow to the aviation industry, with many airlines opting to halt operations. Cambodia Airways remains the sole airline transporting cargo.

“We do hope that Covid-19 will be finished soon. Cambodia Airways will further expand its businesses and investments to contribute to the development of Cambodia,” said Chen.

Havannall said Cambodia-China relations are very good and the leaders of the two countries very close. China’s leaders continue to bring more investors to Cambodia and capital to Cambodia Airways.

“At a recent meeting between Prime Minister Hun Sen and Chinese President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Li Keqiang, the Chinese leaders said they will continue to support Cambodia’s development and will continue to push for more Chinese investment in Cambodia,” he said.

International Air Transport Association (IATA), a trade association of the world’s airlines, issued a statement last week noting the “dramatic turn for the worse” that the global aviation industry’s prospects had taken amid the pandemic.

Director-general and CEO Alexandre de Juniac was quoted as saying: “It is unclear how the virus will develop, but whether we see the impact contained to a few markets and a $63 billion revenue loss, or a broader impact leading to a $113 billion loss of revenue.

“Many airlines are cutting capacity and taking emergency measures to reduce costs. Governments must take note. Airlines are doing their best to stay afloat as they perform the vital task of linking the world’s economies.

“As governments look to stimulus measures, the airline industry will need consideration for relief on taxes, charges and slot allocation,” he was quoted as saying.

The IATA estimated a $29.3 billion loss of global revenue, representing a 4.7 per cent hit to global demand, it said in a press release in February.

The forecast “would translate into a $27.8 billion revenue loss in 2020 for carriers in the Asia-Pacific region – the bulk of which would be borne by carriers registered in China, with $12.8 billion lost in the China domestic market alone.

“Carriers outside Asia-Pacific are forecast to bear a revenue loss of $1.5 billion, assuming the loss of demand is limited to markets linked to China,” said the IATA.

In Cambodia, tourist arrivals by air plummeted around 36 per cent in the first two months compared to the same time last year, said a Ministry of Tourism report.

Cambodia Airways is fully owned by Cambodian-Chinese joint venture Prince International Airlines Co Ltd.

It was registered in Phnom Penh with an initial investment of $200 million and received initial approval to operate in August, 2017. It secured an air operator’s certificate on July 6, 2018.

Early in January, Cambodia Airways added Chengdu, Sichuan in western China to its list of destinations. Chengdu is the fifth city in China that Cambodia Airways connects to, after Macau, Fuzhou, Wenzhou and Shenzhen.

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