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S. Korea eyes ‘travel bubble’ to prop up aviation industry

South Korea's aviation industry desperately needs support to maintain its competitiveness.

South Korea will pursue ‘travel bubble’ agreements for people to travel internationally without restrictions to revitalize the aviation industry, said Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki.

Travel bubbles are agreements between two or more cities or countries that allow for two-way, quarantine-free travel for those who have negative coronavirus test results.

South Korea will also lift other virus-related restrictions.

The Transport Ministry declined to reveal which countries they are negotiating.

South Korea is exploring ways to boost tourism without ruining its virus containment efforts.

According to Kim Sang-do, deputy minister for civil aviation at the Transport Ministry, the aviation industry desperately needs support to maintain its competitiveness.

He added that it is where as many as 200,000 people work for including related industries such as tourism and is a core sector in charge of export logistics.

Among the solutions would be to flights to nowhere” to international travelers, allowing them to tour the country without entering. So far, only Korean airlines have been permitted to offer sightseeing services to residents only.

The country will also extend a reduction in fees airports charge airlines until the end of June this year while considering injecting additional liquidity into low-cost carriers if they experience a temporary cash crunch.

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