Vietnam has enough space for private aircraft: official

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Vietnam has enough airports to accommodate private aircraft, and the country will expand its major airports if necessary, a senior aviation official said.

The growing number of aircraft flying to Vietnam is putting pressure on aviation infrastructure, especially on Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi and Tan Son Nhat in Ho Chi Minh City, Lai Xuan Thanh, deputy head of the administration the Civil Aviation Administration, said in an interview published on news web site VnExpress Saturday.

"However, as Vietnam is operating 21 airports, space for private aircraft should not be a worry," he said.

But Thanh said when the country has more private aircraft, there will be a growing demand for airports. "We plan to continue expanding Noi Bai and Tan Son Nhat as much as possible," he added.

Thanh said the government also facilitates the development of private airports for special purposes at hospitals and oil rigs.

His comments came after Hanh Tinh Xanh, a local company, imported four light aircraft last month. The country previously had only two private aircraft, owned by two of the most wealthy businesspersons.

The four new aircraft have not been approved for flights, Thoi Bao Kinh Te Vietnam reported Monday, citing an unnamed source from the Civil Aviation Administration.

"Aviation regulations do not restrict the ownership of private aircraft. But as of now, Vietnam has only recognized the two aircraft of Hoang Anh Gia Lai and Hoa Phat owners," the source said.

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