Macau Signs Bilateral Air Service Agreement With Japan

The government of the Macau SAR has signed a bilateral air service agreement with the Japanese government.

According to the agreement, Air Macau will open a three times-a-week international route to Narita International Airport from March 28, 2010.

This is the first bilateral air service agreement the third-term Macau SAR government has signed. Macau and Japan can assign several airlines to fly to any air destinations of the other party under the agreement. Other than capacity constraints for flights to Tokyo operated by Macau airlines, there are no constraints for other destinations.

Currently Air Macau is operating a daily roundtrip flight between Macau and Osaka, and Viva Macau is running four weekly roundtrip flights to Tokyo. In addition, the two operators are also running charter flights to other Japanese cities.

Lau Si Io, the secretary for transport and public works of Macau SAR, said that the number of Japanese tourists visiting Macau had increased from 120,000 in 2004 to 370,000 in 2009, which represents a yearly growth of 30%. Lau said that Japan is now Macau's fourth largest tourist source market in Asia.