The Ministry of Transport has told the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) to consider reopening some international air routes to meet travel demand and resume trade activities.
The authority was asked to submit a report on the resumption of some international air services to the ministry prior to June 10, Thanh Nien newspaper reported.
Most domestic air services have been resumed so far, while international air routes remain closed due to the development of Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, in many countries.
Local airlines have only operated a few flights to repatriate Vietnamese nationals stranded abroad.
A report by Airports Corporation of Vietnam (ACV) showed that since early May, the aviation market has gradually rebounded. The number of flights is rising, with the daily frequency of flights reaching 644. On May 10, as many as 765 flights were in operation.
The number of domestic flights is expected to match 60% of the pre-Covid-19 frequency this month.
ACV stated that the coronavirus pandemic has been brought under control in Vietnam, so socioeconomic activities are returning to normal. Also, on domestic flights, the social distancing order and some other relevant regulations have been lifted since May 7.
Data from the CAAV indicated that in May, a mere 2.88 million passengers traveled through local airports, plunging by 70% year-on-year. However, compared with the April figure of 188,000 travelers, this month has seen a significant increase in the number of passengers passing though local airports, supported by the efficiency of Covid-19 infection prevention and control efforts.
Tan Son Nhat airport runway to be closed for repairs
One of Tan Son Nhat International Airport’s runways will be closed for six months for repairs to ensure safety, Tuoi Tre newspaper reported.
According to a plan to renovate the airport, which Cuu Long Corporation for Investment Development and Project Management of Infrastructure submitted to the Ministry of Transport, the company will close the airport’s 25R/07L runway from late June for six months.
The company noted that the 25R/07L runway has deteriorated. Although it has been repaired several times, it could not be completely fixed, posing a hazard for aviation activities at the airport.
Other components of the renovation project, including building four new taxiways, repairing the water drainage system and upgrading the signal lights system, are scheduled for completion in 14 months.
The project, which is expected to help raise the airport’s capacity to 50 million passengers per year, costs over VND2 trillion.
Tan Son Nhat International Airport in HCMC, which is the country’s busiest airport, has a capacity of 36-38 million passengers per year. However, it served 41.2 million passengers last year.
Being overburdened and utilizing deteriorating facilities has affected the airport’s service quality and safety. Therefore, it is in urgent need of renovation. SGT/VNA