Asiana Airlines marks the 20th anniversary of service between Korea and Okinawa

Asiana Airlines marks the 20th anniversary of service between Korea and Okinawa

On March 3, at the Pacific Hotel Okinawa in Naha, President of Asiana Airlines Young-Doo Yoon (third from left) received a certificate of appreciation from Governor Nakaima (second from left) in commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the commencement of the service between Okinawa and Korea.

March 4, 2012 Ryukyu Shimpo

On March 3, Young-Doo Yoon, the president and CEO of Asiana Airlines, visited Okinawa to mark the 20th anniversary of the commencement of the airline’s service between Naha and Seoul. About 120 people including Korean media and people in the tourism industry accompanied him to Okinawa. Governor of Okinawa Hirokazu Nakaima held a meeting with Mr. Yoon and company executives, and a welcome ceremony at the Pacific Hotel Okinawa in Naha.

In the meeting with Governor Nakaima, President Yoon showed a photograph taken in 1992 when the company started the service to Okinawa. In the photo, the airline’s current chairman and Governor Nakaima, who was the deputy governor of Okinawa at that time, are together. With the governor welcoming him back after 20 years, President Yoon said, “I sense that we have a meaningful relationship.”

Asiana Airlines is the only company that has connected Okinawa and Korea since 1992. Okinawa has been gaining recognition because a Korean television drama was filmed there, and last December the airline increased its flights to Okinawa from five to seven times a week. The number of Korean tourists to visit Okinawa was 18500 in fiscal 2010, but it reached a record high of 18800 people in the ten-month period from April of 2011 to January 2012. The company has put a larger aircraft onto the Okinawa route since March 2 to coincide with the live performance by Korean singers in Naha on March 4 that is expected to attract 20000 people.

At the welcome ceremony, Governor Nakaima gave a speech, in which he said, “On behalf of all Okinawans, I would like to express my gratitude that Asiana Airlines has connected Korea and Okinawa for the past 20 years.” President Yoon stated, “Recognizing the importance of the service to Okinawa, we hope to maintain stable operations by expanding demand on both sides and through further product development.”

(English translation by T&CT, Lima Tokumori and Mark Ealey)

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