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Friday, April 28, 2017
Bahrain Airport Company (BAC), the operator and managing body of Bahrain International Airport (BIA), held a series of meetings with its Chinese counterparts and targeted airlines in China to present business opportunities and explore the possibilities of furthering cooperation between the two countries in the field of aviation.BAC Chief Commercial Officer, Ayman Zainal, and Head of Route Development, Nawal Al Majed, represented BAC at the meetings, which were also attended by Bahrain Economic Development Board representatives.Zainal said: "Bahrain enjoys a strategic location with access to the lucrative Saudi Arabian market, which is the largest market in the GCC region, and our airport has positional advantages that could be leveraged to tap into the Saudi market. We offer key advantages for Chinese airlines, such as easy and liberal visa policies that give 67 countries visas upon arrival, and 114 countries access to e-visas. This makes us prime candidates for working with Chinese airline markets. We hope these meetings will produce more cooperated efforts between the two countries in the near future."The meetings come as part of a broader initiative to elevate aviation and tourism in the Kingdom, with more than $30 billion in investment expected for infrastructure development. The number of Chinese arrivals at BIA has also been steadily increasing in recent years, rising by more than 60%, from 22,682 passengers in 2014 to 36,478 in 2016.Bahrain has traditionally had strong economic ties with China, with the two countries signing a bilateral trade agreement in 2000. Currently, nearly 960 Non-Resident Chinese employees and investors are registered in Bahrain, with 44% working in real estate, renting, and business activities, and 38% in wholesale and retail.BAC is the authority responsible for enhancing BIA and increasing the airport.
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