Northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region will further accelerate the construction of airports during the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-25), with a planned eight airports to be built by 2025, bringing the total number of civilian airports in the region to 33, according to the Xinjiang Daily on Wednesday.
The region plans to build eight more airports in areas including Qitai, Luntai and Usu, according to the report.
Zhaosu Tianma airport, Alar Tarim airport and Tashkurgan Khunjerab airport in the region entered operation in 2022, bumping up the number of civilian airports to 25, meaning the region has the most civilian airports of anywhere in China, according to the report.
Tashkurgan Khunjerab airport – China’s westernmost airport and the first ultra-high altitude in the region – officially opened to traffic in December 2022.
Preliminary work for the construction of new airports has been brought forward. For instance, at present, 61 percent of the construction of airport project in Qitai has been completed, and 64 percent completed in Bayanbulak airport project, the report noted.
In order to further promote the construction of the “Air Silk Road”, Xinjiang Airport Group has enhanced its efforts in market development and improved accessibility.
More than four international passenger routes will be opened or resume service this year, and more than two domestic and foreign airlines will be allowed to operate scheduled flights in the region, according to the report.
The Airport Group will also open more new direct flights outside Xinjiang region and continue to increase domestic and international cargo routes, and develop air cargo charter services, exploring establishing overseas cargo terminals, according to the report.