Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Hor Namhong (5th R), Chinese Ambassador to Cambodia Xiong Bo (4th R) and Li Kun (6th L), chairman and chief executive officer of Lanmei Airlines, take part in the launching ceremony of Lanmei Airlines in Phnom Penh, Cambodia on Oct. 9, 2017. Lanmei Airlines (Cambodia), a Chinese-owned airline, was launched in Cambodia on Monday and will operate six-nation flights in the Greater Mekong Sub-region. (Xinhua/Mao Pengfei)
PHNOM PENH, Oct. 9 (Xinhua) -- Lanmei Airlines (Cambodia), a Chinese-owned airline, was launched in Cambodia on Monday and will operate six-nation flights in the Greater Mekong Sub-region.
Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Hor Namhong and Chinese Ambassador to Cambodia Xiong Bo were among nearly 200 guests taking part in the launching ceremony in Phnom Penh.
Li Kun, chairman and chief executive officer of Lanmei Airlines, said the company would invest in six aircrafts in the first year before increasing to 20 planes within three years.
"Quality and safety are our top priority," he said.
Li was confident that the airlines would contribute to serving Cambodia's Rectangular Strategy and China's Belt and Road Initiative as well as the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation.
The airlines would operate flights from Cambodia to Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and China, according to its press release, adding that the airlines would serve as a bridge to promote economic cooperation, cultural exchanges and tourism among the six countries.
Hor Namhong welcomed the presence of Lanmei Airlines in Cambodia's aviation market.
"I strongly believe that Lanmei Airlines will grow into a well-known air company and build a sky highway for Lancang-Mekong six countries to transport more Chinese and other countries' visitors to Cambodia," he said.
Mao Havanall, Cambodian Secretary of State for Civil Aviation, said Cambodia was targeting 2 million Chinese tourists by 2020 and he was confident that Lanmei Airlines could help Cambodia to achieve this ambition.
"SSCA (Cambodian State Secretariat of Civil Aviation) will support Lanmei Airlines development," he said.
According to the press release, the airlines completed its inaugural flight from Cambodia's Sihanoukville to China's Macao on Sept. 29.
To date, Cambodia has seven air carriers, including Cambodia Angkor Air, Bassaka Airlines, Sky Angkor and Bayon Airlines.