Delta Air Lines says it welcomes the resumption of talks between the U.S. government and the Chinese Civil Aviation Administration to further liberalize air service between the United States and China.
"Delta has a keen interest in expanding our presence in Asia, as evidenced by our recent application with the U.S. Department of Transportation to provide the first and only nonstop flights between the world's largest passenger gateway in Atlanta and Shanghai beginning in 2008; our planned initiation of service between Atlanta and Seoul, South Korea this summer; and our ongoing support for further liberalization of aviation access between China and the United States," said Jim Whitehurst, Delta's chief operating officer. "Should the U.S. and Chinese negotiators reach agreement to provide more frequencies or designations beyond the current allotment available under the 2004 U.S.-China Air Services Agreement, Delta will be poised and ready to expand access for our customers into additional Chinese markets."
Delta's pending application with the DOT for nonstop service between Atlanta and China would fill a critical void in air travel today by linking the 55 million people of the Southeastern United States directly to one of the world's fastest growing economies. Delta will demonstrate in the 2008 China route case that Atlanta-Shanghai nonstop service will provide superior consumer and competitive benefits and should be selected by the DOT.
As one of the world's largest international airlines, Delta has been active in China since in 1987. Most recently, Delta opened a sales office in Shanghai, complementing existing offices in Beijing and Guangzhou. Delta also has provided technical and logistical counsel to various Chinese authorities and airlines to assist in the development and management of airline operations throughout China since the mid-1990s.
Delta Air Lines offers customers service to more destinations than any global airline with Delta and Delta Connection carrier service to 308 destinations in 52 countries. With more than 60 new international routes added in the last year, Delta is America's fastest growing international airline and is a leader across the Atlantic with flights to 31 trans-Atlantic destinations. To Latin America and the Caribbean, Delta offers more than 600 weekly flights to 58 destinations. Delta's marketing alliances also allow customers to earn and redeem SkyMiles on more than 14,000 flights offered by SkyTeam and other partners.