Jakarta (ANTARA) - The direct flight from Xiamen Gaoqi Airport, China, to I Gusti Ngurah Rai Airport, Denpasar, Bali, brings positive impact for Bali's tourism and economy, the Transportation Ministry said.

"This is important, given that China is one of the potential markets for tourism in Bali," Air Transportation Director General at the Ministry Maria Kristi Endah Murni said in a statement, Monday.

"Currently, it was recorded that 1,143 tourists from China came to Bali since the start of 2023. The availability of the direct regular flight will certainly help," she noted.

The Xiamen-Denpasar direct flight is available on a daily basis.

The first Xiamen-Denpasar flight became the foremost regular flight after the COVID-19 pandemic that was unveiled last Friday.

Xiamen Airlines has deployed a 169-seater Boeing 738-800 aircraft. The airplane arrives from Xiamen at 11:15 p.m. local time and returns to Xiamen at 00:15 a.m. local time.

Earlier, the I Gusti Ngurah Rai airport had served a Lion Air-operated Boeing 737-900 charter flight from Shenzen to Denpasar once a week.

Regular and charter flights facilitate direct connectivity between Bali and China's two cities of Xiamen and Shenzhen.

Murni expects that flight accessibility between China and Indonesia would encourage the recovery of the aviation sector, especially through the international flight route operated not just in Bali but also in other cities.

Close collaboration between ministries or institutions and all flight stakeholders will help in realizing the flight connectivity potential, so that cities can be connected with the international route, Murni remarked.

In addition to China, another weekly international direct flight by Garuda Indonesia airlines' 250-seater capacity Airbus A333 aircraft has begun to be operated from Narita Airport, Tokyo, Japan, to Sam Ratulangi Airport, Manado, North Sulawesi, since the start of March 2023.

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Translator: Benardy F, Fadhli Ruhman
Editor: Tia Mutiasari
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