The Trump administration is banning Chinese passenger airlines from flying scheduled service to the U.S. starting later this month
A move aimed at ramping up pressure on China, which hasn’t allowed U.S. carriers to resume flights there, and threatens to further isolate the world’s two largest aviation markets from one another.
The order, published Wednesday, takes effect June 16, but it could be moved up.
The issue comes amid rising tensions between Washington and Beijing. The dispute is also a departure from the type of bilateral agreements that the U.S. government has pursued for decades that aim to make it easier for airlines to expand to international airports without onerous government approvals.
The U.S. does not have a so-called Open Skies agreement with China.
The U.S. order affects Air China, China Eastern, China Southern and Xiamen. The airlines did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The measure does not affect flights from Hong Kong, a Department of Transportation spokesman said.
Delta Air Lines and United Airlines have been pushing to return to China after pausing service because of the coronavirus pandemic earlier this year, but they haven’t yet received the approvals from Chinese aviation authorities to do so.