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Diplomat proposes to look into possibility of Davao-India flights

THE Consulate of India is looking forward to the materialization of an international direct flight to Davao City.

Nishikant Singh, First Secretary of the Embassy of India to the Philippines, revealed this to the members of the media in an ambush interview during the 24th Davao Agritrade Expo (Date) 2022 on Thursday, September 29 at the SMX Convention Center, SM Lanang Premier.

“We are looking forward to that. We are actively encouraging the airlines in both India and the Philippines to look out for this opportunity and to explore and set this possibility,” Singh said.

In September 2021, both governments signed a new and modernized air services agreement to further strengthen connectivity and mutual economic growth between the two countries. The agreement aims to promote international air services between the two countries’ respective territories, advance a quality international aviation system, and ensure the highest degree of air safety.

“The work is in progress, and we are optimistic that one day this will happen,” Singh said.

Meanwhile, during the Davao City – Indian Business Roadshow held on February 18, 2022, Indian investors are eyeing to expand in Davao City for it is among the prime investment destinations in the country.

Singh said that they discussed the proposed direct flight between two areas, to which he said the city government responded positively.

“They are very open to this but it depends on the private sector,” he said.

With this, he urged the private sector to look at “the prospect and sit together” for the materialization of this plan.

“So that they can understand the potential market. We have an enabling framework which allows them to have direct connectivity,” the secretary said.

According to him, there are around 150,000 Indians in the country, who are either working, studying, or residing. Although he doesn’t have the exact figure, he bared that there are a growing number of Indians in the city.

Department of Tourism-Davao Region (DOT-Davao) Director Tanya Rabat-Tan said during a press conference on Tuesday, September 27, that they are looking forward to the resumption of other international flights at the Francisco Bangoy International Airport (Davao International Airport) following the improved travel conditions in recent months.

Rabat-Tan said their office is also looking forward for direct flights from other countries in Asia, including Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea. However, this is still under discussion. RGL

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