Six Chinese Airlines Interested in Launching Flights to Croatia

Daniela Rogulj

Back in January, Croatian Minister of Maritime Affairs, Transport, and Infrastructure Oleg Butković met in Beijing with Chinese Transport Minister Li Xiaopeng to discuss the cooperation between the two countries in the area of transport, including the possibility of introducing direct flights to Beijing from Croatia.

Since then, news of the Chinese interest in Croatia has not stopped circulating through the media – and it seems now that six Chinese airlines have also jumped on board.

Namely, Ex Yu Aviation reports that Chinese businesswoman Yu Jiang expressed the interest of six airlines at a press conference on Thursday. 

“One of the issues for Chinese tourists is that they have to transfer through another airport in order to get to Croatia. We are currently negotiating with several airlines over the introduction of nonstop services from China to Croatia. We have six carriers that are interested and I believe that we will be able to announce the first nonstop flights between our two countries very soon,” Yu Jiang said. 

Yu Jiang’s company will take over Hotel Zagorje in Kumrovec and has also cooperated with the Zagreb-based Chinese Southeast European Business Association (CSEBA). CSEBA has supported flights between Croatia and China for some time. 

“We discussed the possibility of Hainan Airlines introducing nonstop flights from China to Croatia, most probably to Zagreb. The launch of this service would boost the number of Chinese tourists to Croatia,” CSEBA said previously. 

Recall, until the end of last year, Hainan operated flights twice a week from Beijing to Belgrade, but after a little more than a year it discontinued them due to the low number of passengers. 

Zagreb Airport has also encouraged flights between the two countries and said that they were hoping to finalize talks with at least one Chinese airline thanks to the considerable interest of Chinese tourists in Croatia and the increasing number of Chinese investments in Croatia. 

Recall, Croatia welcomed over 233,000 Chinese travelers last year, which is a notable increase of 46.7% compared to 2018. 

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