China will tighten its control over the approval of new airlines, cut flights at its busiest airport, in Beijing , and raise safety checks, worried that the industry is expanding dangerously fast, the regulator said Wednesday. No applications for new airlines will be accepted before 2010, and the growth of those already in operation will be controlled, the General Administration of Civil Aviation of China said in a statement on its Web site.
Exceptions will be granted only to freight airlines or to those that mainly use foreign pilots, promise to operate mostly at night, use Chinese-made aircraft or fly in the country’s less developed west and northeast, it said, without explanation. To slow airlines’ expansion plans, pilots and other workers will also have lower overtime limits. [Full Text]
[Image: Flight numbers are being cut at Beijing International Airport, from AP.]