Direct flights, carrying mostly Chinese nationals, start in Cagayan
LAL-LO, Cagayan–The Royal Air Philippines on Sunday (Aug. 18) started direct commercial flights, both domestic and international, at the Cagayan North Development Airport (CNDA) here.
At least 161 people were the first passengers of the airline’s inaugural direct flights.
For its maiden international flight, Royal Air carried 91 passengers from Macau International Airport to CNDA and another 44 passengers from CNDA to Macau.
The airline’s domestic flight from CNDA to Clark in Pampanga and vice versa carried 26 passengers.
The inaugural flights were welcomed by Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) officials.
Raymundo Roquero, CEZA senior deputy administrator, said the commercial flights will boost economic activities in CEZA as airborne traffic will be easily facilitated.
Ceza Administrator Raul Lambino said the 150-hectare CNDA has been receiving chartered flights from Macau but these had to pass through the Tuguegarao International Airport first before proceeding to the CNDA.
The weekly chartered flights, also of the Royal Air, carry mostly Chinese nationals working at CEZA.
The CEZA’s gaming facilities are known to cater to Chinese gamblers who are brought in by junket operators into the area through chartered flights. An incident of gunrunning had also been reported at the airport several months ago. Villamor Visaya Jr. and Yolanda Sotelo/TSB
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