JAL may suspend
Sendai flights

Japan Airlines Co., a unit of Asia's biggest carrier, said it may suspend flights between the northern Japanese city of Sendai and Honolulu in the second half because of falling demand.

Japan Air Lines Japan Airlines President Katsuo Haneda earlier today visited Miyagi Governor Shiro Asano to inform him that the service may be halted, Japan Airline System spokesman Tatsuo Yoshimura told Bloomberg News. The airline operates four weekly flights between Sendai and Honolulu.

Japan Airlines and other carriers in Asia have said revenue declined because of severe acute respiratory syndrome and war in Iraq. The carrier in May predicted a loss of ¥43 billion ($360.7 million) for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2004.

"Since our group has been put under extremely difficult circumstances due to SARS and the war, we have to consider profitability more than we previously did," Yoshimura said.

The suspension is part of the airline's moves to cope with a slump in passenger traffic. Yoshimura said Japan Airlines System may reduce flights and halt services on unprofitable routes in the second half, starting Oct. 1. The airline plans to announce changes in its schedule next month.


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