Anhui province plans to open air services from its capital city Hefei to the United States with flights stopping off at the Shanghai Pudong Airport.
“Discussions are under way with China Eastern Airlines about details of when the flight will start and which airport in the US flights will land at,” said Jiang Houyu, chairman of the Anhui Civil Airport Group, at a meeting which was held in the province recently to discuss customs clearance collaboration in the Yangtze River Delta region.
Anhui put its Xinqiao international airport into operation on May 31, 2013 as part of its preparations for new air services. The airport is now able to handle 630 flights per week, which connect the province with Asian countries such as Japan, Singapore and South Korea.
“We require more routes to meet the growing demand of passengers,” said Jiang, adding that the province lacks flights for Europe and the United States.
“At present, passengers have to transfer at airports in Beijing and Shanghai if they want to travel to European and American cities,” he said.
Meanwhile, Jiang said, the group is also having talks with Air China about a new air route from Hefei to Frankfurt in Germany via Beijing.
Local insiders said opening new flights is a key part of the province’s blueprint for traffic development in the next several years.
Xu Ziyue, director of the Anhui Port Office, said the Zhengpu port at Ma’anshan will become an extended part of the Shanghai port, while a sea-railway container express will connect Bengbu city with the Luchao port in Shanghai.
Along with this, the Shanghai Railway Bureau will invest 200 million yuan in expanding its Bengbu railways.
A letter of intention has been signed with the bureau to open a new container line from Fuyang in Anhui to Ningbo in Zhejiang province, Xu said.
Anhui also signed a memorandum of understanding with Shanghai, Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces to develop Customs clearance and e-port business, he said.