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Local carrier considers direct flights to India

Local carrier considers direct flights to India

130107 07
A new Cambodia Angkor Air Airbus A321 arrives at Phnom Penh International Airport yesterday. Photograph: Vireak Mai/Phnom Penh Post

Local carrier Cambodia Angkor Air (CAA) is considering launching direct flights to main cities in India, about two weeks after Prime Minister Hun Sen made an appeal for direct flights to the Indian prime minister.

The premier made the suggestion to Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during his trip on the 20th anniversary of the ASEAN-India dialogue partnership to start direct flights to Cambodia to enhance and exchange tourism.

Tek Reth Samrach, chairman of CAA, told reporters during the arrival of his company’s new Airbus A321 at Phnom Penh International Airport yesterday that the increase in the number of aircraft will allow it to expand its business operations to countries like India.

“We will check [the] possibility to start direct flights to one main city of India because India has between 800 to 900 million Hindus. CAA thinks that Hindus are a very big [community] so we have to promote it,” he said.

“We do hope that CAA can attract more Hindu people to visit Angkor Wat temple,” he added.

In mid December last year, CAA also bought a new Airbus A321 and now the airline operates three ATR21 and two new Airbuses in total.

“Now, Indians are travelling a lot. If we can attract Indians to come, it will be a big contribution to our tourism industry," Ang Kim Eang, president of the Cambodia Association of Travel Agents said." [We] must have flights to India because we have big Hindu temples here; this will be the most attractive point but we are missing the air connection,” he said.

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