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Air passengers surge in Myanmar in Q1 this year

(Xinhua)

13:48, August 11, 2011

YANGON, Aug. 11 (Xinhua) -- Yangon International Airport saw 510,000 travelers from international airlines and 360,000 local travelers from domestic airlines in the first quarter of this year, representing a 21.65-percent and 23.47-percent year-on-year increase respectively, the official daily New Light of Myanmar reported Thursday.

Yangon International Airport can handle 2.7 million passengers a year, now its passenger arrival is reckoned at over 2 million a year and it will reach its highest capacity before long, according to the civil aviation authorities.

Myanmar is implementing a plan to extend and upgrade the Yangon International Airport to an international level one capable of handling 3.8 million passengers a year and giving full service necessary to be an international airport.

The plan is partly aimed at promoting international relations and economic sector in accordance with features of a new country.

Myanmar's domestic air transport capacity has risen 40 times, having been able to transport an average of 800,000 passengers by local flights yearly, an increase from over 20,000 in the past.

Meanwhile, the number of passengers of overseas flights has now reached 700,000 a year from 50,000 in the past.

There are six domestic airlines in Myanmar including one state- owned, which is the Myanmar Airways, and five private-run -- Air Mandalay, Yangon Airways, Air Bagan, Asian Wings and Kanbawza.

There is also another Myanmar international airline, the Myanmar Airways International (MAI), flying solely some foreign destinations.

There are also 13 foreign airlines flying Yangon which comprise Air China, China Southern Airline, Thai Airways International, Indian Airlines, Qatar Airways, Silk Air, Malaysian Airlines, Bangkok Airways, Mandarin, Jetstar Asia, Phuket Airline, Thai Air Asia and Vietnam Airlines.

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