• Kyodo

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All Nippon Airways Co. held a ceremony Monday to mark the start of flights to Chengdu as part of the first direct service linking Japan with China’s economically vibrant inland.

“We hope that the flights will contribute to further promoting exchanges between Japan and China,” Osamu Asakawa, president of ANA Sales Corp., said during the ceremony in Chengdu airport.

The first flight from Narita International Airport arrived Sunday. The direct flight to Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan Province, takes five to six hours, shaving roughly two hours from indirect flights via Beijing or Shanghai.

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