American Airlines announced
today that more than one quarter of the U.S. Senate, nearly 80 members of
the U.S. House of Representatives and seven of the nation’s governors have
sent letters to the U.S. Department of Transportation in support of the
airline’s request to become the next passenger carrier awarded the right
to fly between the United States and China. Additional letters of support for American’s China application also have
come from dozens of city, county and state officials, chamber of commerce
leaders, economic development organizations, labor unions and businesses
in Illinois and 16 other states.
American has announced its intentions to fly from Chicago to Shanghai,
pending government approval, beginning May 1, 2005, using a 236-seat
Boeing 777 aircraft.
“We are very pleased with the depth and breadth of support that we’ve been
given for our China proposal,” said Will Ris, American’s Senior Vice
President - Government Affairs. “We continue to believe that American will
bring competition to the Chinese marketplace and our supporters believe
that as well.
“Chicago is the perfect choice to operate services provided by the new
route authority,” Ris added. “The greatest public benefit for the largest
number of U.S. passengers and communities will be gained if the DOT
Chicago is the nation’s only hub airport served by two U.S. international
network carriers. Through Chicago, American and American Eagle will
provide highly effective nonstop-to-nonstop connections for 65 U.S. cities
with a mileage circuity of 10 percent or less.
American’s new Chicago - Shanghai routes would provide new service options
and increased competition in the China market that would benefit air
travelers and shippers alike, Ris said.