New airline takes off in Cambodia

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A new Chinese-backed airline extends the list of currently four carriers operating in Cambodia: JC International Airlines took off on its maiden flight on March 17 from its hub in Phnom Penh to Siem Reap and on another flight from Siem Reap to Sihanoukville after it received its official license from Cambodia’s Secretariat of State Civil Aviation earlier.

The airline was founded with an initial capital of $50 million by a Chinese company, Yunnan Jingcheng Group, the parent holding of Kunming-based Ruili Airlines. It currently operates two leased Airbus A320-200 in full economy class configuration and plans to add four more aircraft in the near future.

According to the airline’s CEO Dongyan Huang, plans are to operate a weekly service between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, three flights a week between Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville and three flights weekly from Siem Reap to Sihanoukville.

Later on, it aims at connecting Phnom Penh with Kuala Lumpur and fly three times a week to Singapore, four times a week to Hong Kong and once weekly to Bangkok. Also on the wish list are destinations such as Beijing, Shanghai, Seoul, Tokyo, Yangon, Singapore and Jakarta, with the main target group being Chinese travelers.

JC International Airlines enters a competition with currently four other local airlines in Cambodia, namely Cambodia Angkor Air, Sky Angkor Airlines, Cambodia Bayon Airlines and Bassaka Air which partly fly to the same destinations.

Cambodian Tourism Ministry Secretary of State So Mara said the ministry would provide a strong support to JC International Airlines in order to promote tourism in the country. He noted that Cambodia welcomed around five million international tourists, including about 830,000 Chinese, in 2016, and is expected to receive up to seven million foreigners in 2020, of which two million should be Chinese.

However, Cambodia is notorious for its long list of defunct airlines. Close to 20 carriers went bankrupt or ceased operations for other reasons since 2001, when former flag carrier Royal Air Cambodge had to shut down in the wake of the global aviation crisis at that time.

The latest Cambodian carrier to stop operations was Chinese-backed Apsara International Air, which started with its inaugural flight in October 2014 between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap but never offered a regular schedule and closed down soon thereafter.

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

A new Chinese-backed airline extends the list of currently four carriers operating in Cambodia: JC International Airlines took off on its maiden flight on March 17 from its hub in Phnom Penh to Siem Reap and on another flight from Siem Reap to Sihanoukville after it received its official license from Cambodia’s Secretariat of State Civil Aviation earlier.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

A new Chinese-backed airline extends the list of currently four carriers operating in Cambodia: JC International Airlines took off on its maiden flight on March 17 from its hub in Phnom Penh to Siem Reap and on another flight from Siem Reap to Sihanoukville after it received its official license from Cambodia’s Secretariat of State Civil Aviation earlier.

The airline was founded with an initial capital of $50 million by a Chinese company, Yunnan Jingcheng Group, the parent holding of Kunming-based Ruili Airlines. It currently operates two leased Airbus A320-200 in full economy class configuration and plans to add four more aircraft in the near future.

According to the airline’s CEO Dongyan Huang, plans are to operate a weekly service between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, three flights a week between Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville and three flights weekly from Siem Reap to Sihanoukville.

Later on, it aims at connecting Phnom Penh with Kuala Lumpur and fly three times a week to Singapore, four times a week to Hong Kong and once weekly to Bangkok. Also on the wish list are destinations such as Beijing, Shanghai, Seoul, Tokyo, Yangon, Singapore and Jakarta, with the main target group being Chinese travelers.

JC International Airlines enters a competition with currently four other local airlines in Cambodia, namely Cambodia Angkor Air, Sky Angkor Airlines, Cambodia Bayon Airlines and Bassaka Air which partly fly to the same destinations.

Cambodian Tourism Ministry Secretary of State So Mara said the ministry would provide a strong support to JC International Airlines in order to promote tourism in the country. He noted that Cambodia welcomed around five million international tourists, including about 830,000 Chinese, in 2016, and is expected to receive up to seven million foreigners in 2020, of which two million should be Chinese.

However, Cambodia is notorious for its long list of defunct airlines. Close to 20 carriers went bankrupt or ceased operations for other reasons since 2001, when former flag carrier Royal Air Cambodge had to shut down in the wake of the global aviation crisis at that time.

The latest Cambodian carrier to stop operations was Chinese-backed Apsara International Air, which started with its inaugural flight in October 2014 between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap but never offered a regular schedule and closed down soon thereafter.

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