The opening of a new second runway at Narita airport on April 18 will increase the number of slots available for airlines to 3,211 from 2,523 per week, marking a 27 percent surge over the previous summer season, Land, Infrastructure and Transport Ministry said Friday.

In the fourth week of April, the number of slots for international flights will increase to 3,003 from 2,419, while those for domestic flights will increase to 208 from 104, the ministry said.

The number of international airlines using the airport will increase to 60 from 50, including newcomers from Mongolia, China, Taiwan, Vietnam and Papua New Guinea.

By destination, the percentage of flights to Asian airports from Narita will rise to 50 percent from 42 percent, while those to North America will plummet to 19 percent from 30 percent.

The new runway will be 2.18 km long down from the originally planned 2.5 km, and will be mainly used for flights to destinations in Asia and Pacific regions.

By nationality, the share of slots used by Japanese airlines will decrease to 34 percent from 38 percent, while those of U.S. carriers will fall to 26 percent from 33 percent. The share of slots to be used by Asian airlines will increase to 19 percent from 16 percent.

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