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At the end of 2006, China had 142 airports for civil flights. In the year, airfreight turnover reached 9.43 billion ton/km; passenger turnover was 237.1 billion passenger/km; and the volume of freight traffic was 3.494 million tons. China had a total of 1,336 civil flight routes, 1,068 of them domestic routes reaching all large and medium-sized cities, and 268 of them international, connecting China with more than 88 cities overseas. China has signed agreements on air transport with 106 countries, 51 of them with 93 airlines reaching 31 cities in mainland China.
Although airline companies for civil flights are mainly state-run in China, more and more backing from the government is given to private and jointly-owned airlines involving both Chinese and foreign investment. At present, five private airline companies and six jointly-owned Chinese-foreign airlines have gone into operation.
Inaugural flight of Dongxing Airline Company, the fourth private airline company in mainland China, taking off from Tianhe International Airport, Wuhan, May 19, 2006
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