Canadian Airlines wins YVR to HKG via Russia-China Routes

From:         Jim Innes <jinnes@direct.ca>
Organization: Canada Internet Direct, Inc.
Date:         12 Oct 96 02:36:03 
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Just a little update on longrange nonstoppers from North America. Starting
Oct01/96, Canadian Airlines will inaugurate flights from YVR-HKG via new
Russia/China route. Expected time savings of upto 1.5 hours in winter
winds conditions.

Excerpts from Friday's Globe and Mail;

Canada has negotiated new international air rights that will allow Canadian
airlines to fly over large parts of China and Russia previously banned to
Western commercial aircraft, government and airline experts say.

Using the new routes, airlines leaving Vancouver will be able to cut across
the middle of China on their way to Hong Kong, and will soon be allowed
to fly directly to New Delhi on one tank of jet fuel--in 12 hours, down
from the current 20 hours...

Most flights to Hong Kong must now skirt Russian and Chinese territory,
forcing them to take a circuitous route over the Pacific Ocean and Taiwan,
said Michael Tretheway, special adviser to the president of the Vancouver
International Airport Authority...

The first carrier to take advantage of the new agreement is Calgary-based
Canadian Airlines International Ltd., which plans to fly across the middle
of China starting next Wednesday...

A spokesman for the federal Department of Foreign Affairs said Ottawa
paved the way for the agreement but Canadian Airlines went ahead and
negotiated the actual terms...

Captain Robert Weatherly, vice-president of Canadian's Flight Operations
at the Vancouver head office, said his company's DC-10-30ER's and Boeing
747-400 airplanes will cut across China well to the west of Shanghai en
route to Hong Kong.

The new route will save Canadian 45 minutes and 5.4 tonnes of jet fuel on
every flight between Vancouver and Hong Kong. More important, the shorter
route will allow the airline to carry an extra 5.4 tonnes of cargo on
every trip, potentially worth millions of dollars in extra revenue in a
year...

Capt. Weatherly said Canada has been trying to gain Chinese overfly rights
since 1974. It won partial permission to fly to Beijing in April, 1995,
but has been prohibited from flying over central China until now. Airlines
bound for Japan have been allowed to fly over parts of Russia for several
years. But broader rights were considered unthinkable until after the
Soviet Union collapsed in 1989.