Direct flights between Afghanistan and China resumed on Wednesday morning after three years--with Ariana Afghan Airlines conducting the first flight to Urumqi.
Speaking at the ceremony of the first flight of Ariana airlines to Urumqi, Ghulam Jailani Wafa, deputy minister of Transport and Civil Aviation (MTCA), said that these flights will have a direct impact on the growth of the country's economy and will be beneficial for political and commercial relations between the two countries.
There will be passenger flights as well, according to the MTCA. The flights between Afghanistan and China were suspended since the outbreak of Covid-19.
“It has a direct impact on the economy of the country, economic and political relations, and between the Islamic Emirate and China as well as on trade and the public,” Wafa said.
He added that the ministry has started working on technical problems in the country's airports with the aim of creating more capability and more air corridors for domestic and international companies.
The Chinese embassy in Kabul pledged that they will cooperate with Afghanistan in the economic and trade sectors.
“Today, we resumed the direct flight from Kabul and Urumqi ... I believe we are promoting both countries’ economic and trade collaboration,” an official from the Chinese embassy said.
The head of Kabul airport, Abdul Hadi Mohammad, talked about the improvement in the Afghan air aviation system, saying that a "D-check process," which previously cost $1.5 million to $1.7 million, is now possible inside Afghanistan for $200,000.
“Currently, the D-Check process inside the country is being conducted with less cost. The D-check used to be conducted in Turkey or other countries and it would take five to eight months,” he said.
This comes as the acting head of the Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Investment (ACCI) urged China to help Afghanistan in the extraction of mines.
According to Hadi Mohammad, around 90,000 people including 5,000 foreigners travelled abroad within the last month. He said that 200 cargo flights were conducted.