Chinese airlines to increase weekly round-trip flights to US to 50 from current 35, starting March 31

Chinese passenger airlines will be able to increase their weekly round-trip flights to the US from the current 35 to 50, starting from March 31, the US Department of Transportation (USDOT) said on Monday after frequent China-US interactions.

The approval "is a significant step forward in further normalization of the US-China market in anticipation of the Summer 2024 traffic season," the USDOT said.

The shift comes amid increased dialogue between Chinese and US officials this year.

Chinese Commerce Minister Wang Wentao met with US Trade Representative Katherine Tai on the sidelines of the 13th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization in Abu Dhabi, on Monday. Wang and Tai engaged in "professional and in-depth" discussions on bilateral and multilateral economic and trade issues of mutual interest, according to the Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM).

Wang expressed serious concerns over additional US tariffs imposed on Chinese goods and other trade issues during the talk, MOFCOM said.

In another development, the chief executive of the US Chamber of Commerce, Suzanne Clark, is leading a delegation of former US government officials to Beijing this week, Reuters reported.

The group will meet with senior Chinese government officials and local business leaders, as well as American business executives and foreign diplomats, according to a representative of the chamber.

Earlier this month Chinese and US officials held a third round of talks in Beijing as part of their Economic Working Group set up last year, adding to growing interactions since the beginning of 2024 between officials of the world's two biggest economies.

China’s Ministry of Finance (MOF) said the two sides had in-depth, candid, pragmatic and constructive exchanges on the macroeconomic situation and policies, G20 financial cooperation, debt of developing countries, industrial policies and other issues.

During the meeting, the Chinese side expressed concerns about additional US tariffs imposed on Chinese goods, restrictions against China on two-way investment, and sanctions that suppress Chinese enterprises, the MOF said, adding that the two sides agreed to continue talks.

The US delegation indicated that US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen looked forward to a return visit to China at an "appropriate time," US Department of the Treasury said.

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