Singapore Airlines to start flying to Myanmar in October

SINGAPORE, Sept 5 Wed Sep 5, 2012 12:16am EDT

SINGAPORE, Sept 5 (Reuters) - Singapore Airlines Ltd (SIA) said On Wednesday it will launch daily services to Yangon on Oct. 28 to cater to rapidly growing demand for travel to Myanmar since the country launched political and economic reforms after decades of isolation.

Increased flights to Myanmar could help raise the Southeast Asian nation's profile among international visitors and bring in more tourist dollars.

SIA and its regional unit, SilkAir, will serve Yangon, Myanmar's commercial capital, with 16 weekly flights, the Singapore flagship carrier said.

"Demand has been growing strongly for both business and leisure travel to Myanmar and Singapore Airlines looks forward to serving the country for the first time," Mak Swee Wah, SIA's executive vice president for commercial, said in a statement.

The flights are subject to government approvals.

Myanmar is looking for investors to develop a second international airport for Yangon on the site of an old Japanese-built airstrip from World War II, state media said in June. (Reporting by Eveline Danubrata; Editing by John O'Callaghan and Matt Driskill)