Maldivian begins flights to China’s Fuzhou

IBRAHIM NASIR INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, MALDIVES, February 10, 2016: Passengers embark from Maldivian's inaugural flight from Fuzhou, China. HAVEERU PHOTO/HUSSAIN SHAYAH
Maldivian, the national airline of the Maldives, has commenced weekly flights to Fuzhou, the capital city of Fujian Province in China.

The inaugural flight, carrying 146 passengers, departed from Fuzhou late Tuesday and landed in Ibrahim Nasir International Airport (INIA) at 6:00 a.m. Wednesday.

The passengers of Maldivian’s inaugural flight from Fuzhou were welcomed at the airport by a delegation including Island Aviation Services (IAS)’s managing director Abdul Haris, Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC)’s acting managing director Haris Mohamed and Chinese Ambassador to Maldives Wang Fukang, along with senior officials of IAS, MMPRC and the Chinese Embassy to Maldives.

According to IAS MD Abdul Haris, Maldivian will operate flights to and from Fuzhou every Wednesday, a process which took six months in the making. The MD anticipated major boosts to the Maldives tourism with this development, including more opportunities for enterprises.

He added that tourists from Fuzhou will bring more business for resorts and hotels of varying classes across the country.

“This opens another door to bring in foreign currency to the Maldives’ economy,” he said.

Maldivian currently operates flights to six destinations across China in addition to Fuzhou. Haris revealed that plans are underway to begin operations to two more Chinese destinations.

Meanwhile, Chinese Ambassador to Maldives Wang Fukang remarked on the popularity of the Maldives amongst the Chinese as a holiday getaway and assured that the number of tourists from China to Maldives will spike with the rise of China’s economy.

He commented that the government’s Visit Maldives Year 2016 campaign to bring a record number of tourists to the Maldives will also draw holidaymakers from China. Earlier, speaking at the special ceremony held to mark the Chinese New Year on Tuesday, the ambassador had estimated that around half a million Chinese tourists will arrive in the archipelago this year.

Wang Fukang also revealed plans to add three more routes to the current 13 flight routes between the Maldives and China in the future.

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