US Airlines Asked Biden Administration To Pause Flights to and From China

American Airlines Boeing 737 © Carlos Yudica/Adobe

Airlines based in the United States have asked President Joe Biden and his administration to put a moratorium on flights to and from China, according to CNN.

The pause on any further flights between the two countries is a protest of sorts over Chinese policies that they say are anti-competitive and hurt American workers.

Ironically, Asia is one of the most lucrative markets for airlines based in the United States.

“The competitive disadvantage is harmful to the approximately 315,000 workers employed by US passenger airlines that serve China,” according to a letter published Thursday addressing Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.

The letter was sent by the trade group Airlines for America, which advocates on behalf of more than a dozen airlines, including the largest carriers in the U.S.

“If the growth of the Chinese aviation market is allowed to continue unchecked and without concern for equality of access in the market, flights will continue to be relinquished to Chinese carriers at the expense of US workers and businesses,” A4A said.

Earlier this year, the administration said it would allow Chinese flights to increase service to the United States. Some 50 flights per week from both countries were allowed.

But things changed.

The alleged anti-competitive disadvantage with China worsened in 2022, the letter said, when China’s airlines continued to access Russian airspace while U.S.-based carriers stopped using it as a result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

China’s Foreign Ministry said on Friday that increasing direct flights was the “consensus reached” when Chinese leader Xi Jinping and President Biden met in November.

“It (increasing flights) will help the two peoples strengthen exchanges and enhance mutual understanding,” the ministry said.

Source: Travel Pulse