• Kyodo

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Japan Airlines began using Brazilian-made Embraer 170 jets on regional routes Sunday, with the first flight from Nagoya to Matsuyama, Ehime Prefecture, taking off shortly before 7 a.m.

It is the first time a passenger jet manufactured in Brazil has been used for domestic flights in Japan.

Initially, JAL will operate two 76-seat Embraer 170 planes on four round-trip flights per day connecting Nagoya and Fukuoka and one round-trip a day between Nagoya and Matsuyama, Ehime Prefecture.

Because the Brazilian jets boast fuel-efficient operations, the airline plans to add them to its Fukuoka-Matsuyama route in April and its Sapporo-Akita route by the end of the year, according to JAL officials.

The Embraer 170, made by Empresa Brasileira de Aeronautica SA, will eventually also be used for flights between Fukuoka and Shizuoka, where a new airport will open in June, the officials said.

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