Ceremony Held To Mark Switch Of Government Planes

Ceremony held to mark switch of government planes

The Japanese government aircraft will be taken out of service at the end of this month. A ceremony was held on Sunday to mark the switch to the new planes.

The two Boeing 747-400s have been in service for more than 20 years. They were used for overseas trips by the Emperor and the prime minister, and have flown to 100 countries and regions around the world.

The event at Chitose Air Base in northern Japan was attended by 150 people, including Air Self-Defense Force personnel.

The pilot in charge of the old aircraft handed over the emblem on the boarding door to the pilot of the successor planes. The 40 centimeter-wide seal features the image of an eagle.

The new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft are more fuel-efficient and feature inflight Wi-Fi service.

The Defense Ministry says the current planes will be sold to the private sector after retirement.

The ministry says it plans to show to the public the chairs, tables and other furniture from the aircraft's VIP lounges at a base in Hamamatsu, central Japan.