Sunday, April 5, 2009

Northwest to fly to Vietnam

HANOI - NORTHWEST Airlines has become the second American carrier licensed to fly to Vietnam, according to a report posted on the Vietnamese government's website.

The licence, which comes into effect in June, allows Northwest Airlines to use a Boeing 757 to fly passengers between Ho Chi Minh City and San Francisco, with a transit stop in Tokyo, according to the report posted Saturday.

In 2004, United Airlines became the first American commercial carrier to fly to Vietnam since the 1975 end of a war that claimed 58,000 American and three million Vietnamese lives.

The national carrier, Vietnam Airlines, also wants to fly to the United States but has delayed its plans to do so several times.

After 1975, many Vietnamese fled the communist nation for the United States and it is estimated that more than 1.3 million Vietnamese now live there.

The Vietnamese government has over the past decade tried to encourage them to return, in a bid to tap their business acumen and financial resources.

Many American investors also seek business opportunities in the nation of 86 million people, while increasing numbers of wartime veterans have returned to visit their former battlefields. -- AFP

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