August 1, 2008

Vietnam’s First Private Airline Delays Launch Due to High Oil Prices

Vietnam's first private airline delays launch due to high oil prices

HANOI, July 31 (Xinhua) -- Vietnam's first private airline, Vietjet Air, has announced it would conduct its first commercial flights in mid-2009 instead of December, mainly due to high oil prices, local newspaper Vietnam News reported Thursday.

Vietjet Air has also announced it would delay hiring two Boeing 737-700 planes to help cut costs.

The airline originally planned to operate domestic flights to major cities such as Hanoi capital, central Da Nang city and southern Ho Chi Minh City, and then move up to regional destinations like Thailand, China's Hong Kong and Singapore. It will review the planned routes to ensure they operate at a profit.

Vietjet Air planned to launch its first flights in December, when world oil price was projected to be 70 U.S. dollars per barrel. On July 30, oil sat at around 122.45 dollars a barrel on the global market, after a steep slide from the July 11 record high of 147.27 dollars, said the newspaper.

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