China blocks new airlines till 2010

China’s aviation authorities are suspending applications for new airlines until 2010 whilst imposing stricter monitoring on any new air carriers in order to prevent an overheating of the nation’s airline industry.A statement on the General Administration of Civil Aviation of China (CAAC) website suggests the move will keep the rapid development of air transport in check and ensure safety standards can be maintained.

According to the announcement, safety has been threatened because of a shortage of pilots and the limited capacity of both airspace and domestic airports.

However, the CAAC will still welcome applications to establish cargo airlines that employ mostly foreign pilots and operate at night, as well as airlines that use China-made aircraft and operate in western and northeastern China.