Himalayan Airlines plans maiden flight in October

LHASA – Himalayan Airlines, a company newly forged by China’s Tibet Airlines and two Nepali companies, is scheduled to launch its maiden flight on Oct 28, said the Chinese shareholder on Wednesday.

The joint venture will launch direct flights from Kathmandu to Lhasa and Kathmandu to Chengdu using aircraft including Airbus-319 and Airbus-320.

The new airlines was set up in partnership with Nepal’s HIF (Himalaya Infrastructure Fund) Aviation Investment Company and Yeti World Investment Company, with the two firms jointly holding 51 percent of the stakes in the joint venture and the rest owned by Tibet Airlines.

The agreement among the three companies was signed on Monday in Nepal’s capital, Kathmandu.

Cheng Yiru, chairman of Himalayan Airlines, said the new company has plans to buy 15 Airbus 320 in the next five years. It is expected to create over 1,000 jobs in Nepal.

Nepal has been Tibet’s biggest trade partner since 2006, accounting for 58.5 percent of Tibet’s total $3.3 billion foreign trade in 2013.

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