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Airlines, rail compete for passengers

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Published on May 4, 2011

The growing popularity of high-speed rail travel in China means the country's airlines are having to step up their efforts.
At the end of March this year, all return flights from Wuhan to Nanjing were suspended. In April, the same decision was made in regard to flights between Wuhan and Nanchang.
Wuhan Tianhe Airport says passenger flow during the Spring Festival dipped to a 23-year-low.
And with a high-speed rail network between Beijing and Shanghai opening soon, airlines are nervous about what lies ahead.
Gong Picai, Vice President of China Eastern Airlines, Wuhan said "Our passenger intake has dropped 20 percent after the high-speed rail route to Guangzhou opened. In order to minimize our losses, we are now expanding our international flights."
Meanwhile, the Wuhan to Guangzhou high-speed rail and Hefei to Wuhan high-speed rail are increasing the frequency of their round trips, from 100 to over 160 during the day.

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