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China to suspend Etihad Airways, SriLankan Airlines Shanghai route from Aug 17

China’s aviation regulator said on Wednesday that it would suspend Etihad Airways from flying its Abu Dhabi-Shanghai route and China Eastern Airlines from operating its Manila-Shanghai route each for a week from August 17 due to COVID-19 cases. 

SriLankan Airlines will halt its Colombo-Shanghai route for four weeks from August 17 due to a high number of arriving passengers testing positive for the coronavirus, the Civil Aviation Administration of China said.

Six passengers tested positive on an Etihad Airways’ EY862 flight on Aug. 3, while there were six positive cases on a China Eastern Airlines’ MU212 flight on Aug. 5, and there were 23 positive cases on a SriLankan Airlines’ UL866 flight on Aug. 7, according to a statement posted on Wednesday on the website of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).

The suspension of Etihad Airways and China Eastern Airlines’ flights will last for one week, starting on Aug. 17, while flights of SriLankan Airlines will be suspended for four weeks.

To further contain the spread of COVID-19, a reward and suspension mechanism was introduced by the CAAC on June 4.

According to the CAAC policy, if all inbound passengers on an airline test negative for the novel coronavirus for three weeks in a row, the operating airline will be allowed to increase its number of flights to two per week.

If the number of passengers testing positive reaches five, the airline’s flights will be suspended for a week. The suspension will last for four weeks if the number of passengers testing positive reaches 10.

The CAAC also said that the airlines are not allowed to transfer the original quota for EY862, MU212, and UL866 to other routes.

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