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Pattaya Daily News

26 November 2007 :: 12:11:59 pm 22914

Some Airlines Against Transfer Of International Flights To Don Mueang

BANGKOK, Nov 25 -- Senior executives of some airline companies have voiced their objection to transferring selected international flights from Suvarnabhumi Airport to the former international gateway of Don Mueang airport now being used for domestic flights. They cited possibly higher operational costs, while transportation between the two airports was still a hassle.
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Sopin Daengteth, chairwoman of the Airport Operations Committee (AOC), said AOC executives would attend a workshop organized by Airports of Thailand Public Company Limited tomorrow (Monday). They would stand firm on their disagreement with the government’s approval of using Don Muang airport for international flights.

She noted the AOC had earlier explained to the government it would not support a return to Don Muang airport on the outskirts of Bangkok for international flights. Airlines would have to shoulder higher operational costs while passengers would be inconvenienced if the two airports were used simultaneously because transportation between the two was still lax, she explained.

Meanwhile Udom Tantiprasongchai, chairman of Orient Thai Airlines, said the reopening of Don Mueang airport for international flights would be senseless if the government wanted to solve problems prevailing at Suvarnabhumi Airport, located in Bangkok’s neighboring province of Samut Prakan, because the latter had now been in service for slightly more than a year. He said expansion at Suvarnabhumi Airport could easily be carried out if the government claimed the airport was over-crowded.

Mr. Udom commented a return to Suvarnabhumi Airport would benefit some airlines only. If low cost airlines flew from Don Muang to some key international destinations, they would cut air fares considerably in order to compete with THAI. “That would damage the whole system of the national aviation industry” he said.

Meanwhile sources said senior executives of THAI were also against the government’s idea of reopening Don Mueang airport for international flights, again because of expected higher operational costs and passenger inconvenience.

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : PDN staff   Category : Business News

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