MAI offers relief flights for stranded expats, essential cargo deliveries

Myanmar Airways International (MAI) has been working with foreign embassies to operate relief flights to cities like Guangzhou, Seoul and Kuala Lumpur. Other routes will be announced once confirmed.

So far, MAI has flown some 800 stranded expats out of Yangon to Guangzhou and Seoul and is scheduled to operate three more flights on April 7, 9 and 11 to Seoul and one more to Kuala Lumpur on April 9, according to the company.

“We want to ensure that air travel facilitates the essential movement of passengers and cargo. We are working with related organisations to repatriate their citizens back home such as our collaboration with Embassy of Malaysia,” said Tanes Kumar, Commercial Director of MAI.

Passengers on MAI’s relief flight to Kuala Lumpur include Malaysians, Singaporeans, Indonesians, Australians and New Zealand nationals. The non-Malaysians will transit in Kuala Lumpur before taking connecting Malaysia Airlines and Singapore Airlines flights to Sydney, Auckland, Jakarta and Singapore.

Passengers are expected to pay for their own airfares, which will cover operating requirements for specific routes, such as estimated one way passenger loads and potential cargo carriage.

Operating relief flights are also opportunities for MAI to transport cargo comprising essential items t to help the country fight COVID-19. To date, MAI has carried about 22 tonnes of inbound and outbound cargo. Inbound cargo is mostly medical supplies supplies, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), masks and gloves.

On April 3 for example, MAI helped KBZ Bank deliver 23,000 sets of European CE Standard PPE suits with full sleeves, 17,000 medical protective goggles, 15,000 medical protective shoes,10,000 bottles of 500ml hand sanitizer, 300 thermometers and other important equipment from Guangzhou.

So far, the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) has been “supportive of our requests as they understand the nature of these flight, as long as we adhere to the rules and regulations imposed. We too, in return, ensure that we do not carry any passengers inbound into Myanmar as per the guideline provided,” it said.

The Ministry of Health and Sports and DCA on March 29 announced that the landing of all international commercial passenger flights will not be allowed at Yangon International Airport and any other airport in Myanmar between March 30 and April 13.

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Source : Myanmar Times

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