Air China has announced that it is suspending the scheduled service from Sendai, Miyagi prefecture to Beijing via Shanghai from 27 October 2013 to 29 March 2014. There will be no Chinese carrier operating the service linking China and Sendai by then.
It is believed that the Sino-Japanese territorial dispute last year has resulted in sluggish demand for both business and leisure travel between the two countries. The passenger flow has fallen by more than half since the beginning of the dispute.
“There is no precedent for a disruption of scheduled service to China except in the aftermath of the deadly earthquake in eastern Japan in 2012,” said one government official from the prefecture of Miyagi. “We appeal to the carrier to resume service as soon as possible.”
China’s flag carrier has already stopped the flight from Sendai to Beijing via Dalian last October. It is unclear when the service will start again.