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Old March 8th, 2011, 06:39 AM   #3741
EricIsHim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline View Post
Mega Global Airlines - believe it's from the Maldives. I recall posting something about them coming to HKG before.
According to wikipedia, it's the one and only one plane in the fleet of the airline, and it flies between Gan and HK once every five days on a charter basis, and HK is the only international destination. The airline is only two months + a few days old in terms of flight service.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mega_Global_Air

p.s. and no wonder that logo for daodao.com looks so familiar, it's the chinese version of tripadvisor!
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Old March 8th, 2011, 08:53 AM   #3742
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Originally Posted by EricIsHim View Post

p.s. and no wonder that logo for daodao.com looks so familiar, it's the chinese version of tripadvisor!
I was thinking of the exact same thing for the longest time... where have I seen that owl? =P
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Old March 9th, 2011, 02:56 PM   #3743
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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-12672601

Private jets to soar in Asian skies on Chinese demand


Hong Kong boasts one of Asia's longest histories in private aviation with its first Flying Club established in December 1929.

Today, its Business Aviation Centre, in a corner of Chek Lap Kok airport, is one of the region's busiest.

More than 4,000 private jets arrive and leave from this exclusive terminal every year.

The charter company Asia Jet operates five aircraft from there. Three more planes are on order. It offers exclusive trips to the region's wealthy elite.

A weekend trip for you and a handful of friends or colleagues to Beijing from Hong Kong costs $51,000. Fancy a getaway to Maldives? That will be $120,000, please.

Despite the premium price, more people in the region can afford these trips.

"There is a lot of activity, especially coming from China," says the company's chief executive, Mike Walsh.

"Their appetite for the best, the newest and the largest is here and they want to fly, not just regionally, but directly to the US and Europe.

"China accounts for 40% of our business now, but as we open our second hub in Shanghai, we expect that to grow to 60 to 70%."

Million dollar shopping

Renting a private jet is much cheaper than buying your own plane.

Gulfstream is the leading manufacturer of private jets. Its 14-seater G450, which we flew in, costs $38.25m.

Yet, the company is also seeing its sales increasing in the region.

"Gulfstream's fleet in Hong Kong and mainland China is growing rapidly," says Roger Sperry, the company's regional senior vice-president of international sales.

There are 30 Gulfstream aircraft in mainland China and another 28 based in Hong Kong. Two-thirds are long-range models.

China is estimated to have 200 privately owned aeroplanes in total, far fewer than the US, where there are more than 200,000 of them.

This is because China is a relative newcomer to the market. Until May 2003, private individuals and companies could not own their own planes.

But as the number of millionaires and billionaires rises in China, Gulfstream is betting on private flying taking off.

"As China's economy continues to grow, Chinese business leaders and entrepreneurs will soon recognise the advantages provided by the business-aviation industry," Mr Sperry says.

Triple whammy

Buying and operating a private jet in China or Kong Kong, however, remains complicated.

It is a triple whammy of obtaining a pilot's licence, registering the plane and then getting approval for every flight over the mainland from the country's military-operated air traffic control, all of which take much longer in China than in other countries.

Herbert McCormick from Asia Jet tells the BBC what it's like to fly a business jet.

The government recognises the importance of this growing market. In its 12th Five-Year Plan for 2011 to 2015, it said for the first time that it would promote the private aviation industry.

That will include building 45 new airports at a cost of around 1.5 trillion yuan ($227bn).

"China definitely has made commitments to enhance its existing business-aviation infrastructure and as more and more people recognise the value of business aviation, we do believe the rules will continue to change," Mr Sperry adds.

Crowded skies

At Hong Kong Business Aviation Centre, there are more private jets than places to park them.

"There are 33 permanently registered jets for 19 slots," says Asia Jet's Mr Walsh.

There is also a limited number of take-off and landing slots each hour.

Even billionaires must wait for their turn, as priority is given to scheduled flights.

China's commercial aviation industry is also growing fast.

The number of passenger trips rose by 15.8% in 2010. The Civil Aviation Administration of China predicts there could be 500 million individual journeys by 2015.

Messy congestion

Hong Kong is one of the five airports in the Pearl River Delta, along with Guangdong, Shenzhen, Macau and Zhuhai.

But there are three separate air traffic control systems, which tends to make congestion worse.

Giovanni Bisignani, CEO of the International Air Transport Association has ranked the congestion here among the top three global air traffic control problems that need to be fixed, along with the Single European Sky and NextGen in the US.

At the moment, Hong Kong airport can cope with one landing or take-off every 60 seconds.

The Civil Aviation Department plans to shave two seconds off that gap this year and get it down to 53 seconds between planes by 2015.

The IATA says that in order to cram in even more arrivals and departures, Hong Kong will need a third runway.

Mr Walsh of Asia Jet says that once these roadblocks are removed, the sky will be the limit for the sector's growth.

"The future is very bright, but those issues and some tax issues, if they were to go away, that'd be great," he said.

"I think they are looking at it very seriously now, which would help us to grow exponentially in the next few years," Mr Walsh adds.

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Old March 13th, 2011, 09:46 PM   #3744
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http://www.hongkongairport.com/eng/m...es/pr_986.html

February Traffic Shows Across-the-board Increase
14-3-2011


Boosted by strong Chinese New Year (CNY) traffic, passenger and cargo throughput at Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) registered year-on-year growth of 17.0% and 30.1% respectively, to 3.9 million and 257,000 tonnes, in February 2010. Air traffic movements also rose by 4.9% from the same month in 2009, to 22,270.

Benefiting from the CNY holidays, Hong Kong resident travel surged by 45.3% and visitors by 17.5% year-on-year. Combined January and February figures—which balance out the seasonal impact of CNY—show an increase of 15.3% in Hong Kong resident traffic and 9.2% in visitor numbers. During the first two months, traffic to/ from South East Asia, Chinese mainland, Taiwan and Japan all showed healthy growth.

On the cargo side, February’s imports jumped 28% year-on-year while exports grew 44% and transshipments rose 8%. Combined statistics for the first two months show that imports and exports both increased by over 40%, while transhipments also grew by more than 10%. Strong import and export growth was experienced across all HKIA major markets.

Stanley Hui Hon-chung, Chief Executive Officer of the Airport Authority, said, "February’s performance was encouraging as it was the first month since July 2008 that all three traffic figures recorded growth, fully reflecting a continued recovery in the economy.

"Aggregate figures for January and February also showed across-the-board increases. During those two months, the airport handled 7.9 million passengers, 558,000 tonnes of cargo and 45,730 flight movements, which represented increases of 6.9%, 36.9% and 0.6% respectively over the same period in 2009. Both passenger and cargo traffic have returned to the pre-crisis levels in 2008, although aircraft movements were still 5.7% below the first two months of 2008. Based on these figures, we have confidence that this growth trend will continue," Mr Hui added.

Mr Hui also said according to operating schedules that the airlines have filed with the Civil Aviation Department, flight movements during the summer operating season will increase by about 15% over the same season last year, indicating that the aviation industry is ramping up flights to meet the anticipated market demand of the coming months.

On a rolling 12-month basis, cargo throughput increased slightly by 0.2% year-on-year to 3.5 million tonnes. Passenger volume decreased by 3.0% to 46.6 million, and air traffic movements recorded a decline of 6.2% to 279,755.

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Old March 14th, 2011, 09:03 PM   #3745
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MIAT Mongolian Airlines S11 Operation Changes



As per 14MAR11 GDS timetable display, MIAT Mongolian Airlines further adjusts planned Summer 2011 operation. Planned leased Boeing 767 operation appears to be revived, and is to operate nonstop service to Berlin during Summer peak season, as well as other regional routes.

Latest MIAT S11 Operation changes as follows:

Ulaan Baatar – Berlin Tegel 16JUN11 – 30AUG11 4 weekly NONSTOP service with Boeing 767 aircraft, replacing previously planned 4 weekly 737-800 service via Ekaterinburg (technical stop)
OM137 ULN0730 – 0945TXL 767 x135
OM138 TXL1555 – 0525+1ULN 767 x135

Day 467 from 16JUN11 to 04JUL11

Ulaan Baatar – Moscow Sheremetyevo – Berlin Tegel Service operates 2 weekly from 27MAR11 to 12JUN11 and from 31AUG11
OM135 ULN0820 – 1055SVO1155 – 1235TXL 737 47
OM136 TXL1400 – 1830SVO1945 – 0545+1TXL 737 47

Service from June 2011 operates with Boeing 767 aircraft
From 16JUN11 to 30AUG11, service to Moscow codeshares on AEROFLOT operating flight, Daily

Ulaan Baatar – Beijing 29JUN11 – 31AUG11 Peak season operates 13 weekly on board Boeing 737-800 aircraft

Ulaan Baatar – Hong Kong 05JUN11 – 25SEP11 Planned NEW 2 weekly Scheduled service (replacing charter) remains unchanged, with 737-800. Flight Number changes from OM601/602 to OM297/298
Ulaan Baatar – Osaka 01JUL11 – 30AUG11 Seasonal service 2 weekly
Ulaan Baatar – Seoul Incheon Peak season operates 12 weekly. Boeing 767 aircraft replacing 737 on following flights and periods
OM301/302 eff 01JUN11 Day 136
OM305/306 01JUN11 – 16JUN11 Day 6 17JUN11 – 02SEP11 Day 135

Ulaan Baatar – Tokyo Narita Peak season in July and August 2011 operates 5 weekly, reduced from previously planned Daily
OM501 ULN0655 – 1230NRT 737 x47
OM502 NRT1330 – 1740ULN 737 x47

http://airlineroute.net/2011/03/14/om-s11-update4/
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Old March 14th, 2011, 09:14 PM   #3746
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機場研第3跑道 料填海600公頃

(經濟日報)2011年3月14日 星期一 06:00
【經濟日報專訊】港府及機管局 正研建香港機場第3條跑道,據本報了解,興建新跑道須填海料約600公頃,等於約半個機場島;而由於建材價格續升,最新估計造價料升至約900億元,不排除動工時造價升至逾1,000億元。

龐大的工程費預料由政府及機管局攤分,機管局擬透過借貸籌集數百億元,令公帑承擔減少,避免再現高鐵撥款的爭議事件。

據悉,港府認為第3條跑道必須興建,否則本港會淪為亞洲二流航空中心、步英國 希斯路機場後塵(見另文——「借鑑希斯路 免淪為二流中心」)。

建於北面 如半個機場島

機管局正進行《香港國際機場 2030規劃大綱》研究,將在今年上半年展開公眾諮詢,包括興建第3條跑道。現時機場島面積約1,200公頃,消息透露第3條跑道建於機場島北面,需要填海約600公頃,約等於半個現時的機場島。

至於為何要填海約600公頃?綜合消息透露,因跑道之間要有一定距離,又要興建配套設施,例如機電及控制塔等,並要預留土地將來再興建新客運大樓等。

金融海嘯令全球經濟陷入谷底,不少國家大興土木帶動經濟發展,致國際建材價格大升。當局去年估計第3條跑道的造價約600億至700億元,據悉,最新估算的造價料約900億元,而愈遲興建,造價再升亦不足為奇,不排除動工時會升至逾1,000億元。

事實上,本港興建第3條跑道已討論多年,本港智庫組織香港集思會及學者去年已指出,香港機場2條跑道將在2017年飽和,未來航空市場卻持續增長,到時或出現趕客情況。即使現時落實工程,施工期也要約10年,即較飽和點遲4年才落成,故工程不能再拖。

各界對興建第3條跑道的討論,其中一個焦點是財務安排,政府亦擔心再出現高鐵669億元撥款的爭議事件。可靠消息透露,因跑道造價高昂,預料由政府及機管局會攤分承擔造價,機管局擬透過市場融資承擔數百億元。

減公帑負擔 免高鐵翻版

消息又指,餘下資金會由政府負責,除機管局自行融資那部分外,政府可能作擔保人協助該局再進行融資;剩餘部分才由公帑承擔,令政府出資減少「一大截」,減低政府向立法會 申請撥款的難度。

港府銳意將香港打造為亞洲航空樞紐,本港機場現為區內龍頭機場之一,港府擔心假若不盡快興建第3條跑道,香港可能會步英國希斯路後塵,被上海 、廣州及深圳 趕過,成為亞洲二流航空樞紐。事實上,上海及廣州的機場規劃均會增至5條跑道(見表)。

雖然港府經常低估基建使用量,但前港英政府於1991年的「新機場總綱計劃」中的預測,赤鱲角機場於2005年時的航班升量達20.22萬架次。但該年實際情況卻高達26.35萬架次,較預期多約3成,其後年年續升;換言之本港機場2條跑道的用量,早超預期。 (http://hk.news.yahoo.com/article/110313/23/n7d7.html)
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Old March 15th, 2011, 01:02 PM   #3747
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Reporters go through radiation contamination screening process upon arrival in Hong Kong
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Government Press Release

Twenty-four reporters from a number of local media organisations covering the Japanese earthquake arrived in Hong Kong on four flights last night (March 14).

The reporters were worried that they might have been contaminated by radiation as they had been reporting on news at Fukushima Prefecture or travelling past the area. They had therefore expressed, through their respective organisations to the Department of Health and the Hospital Authority, their wishes of going through the radiation screening process right away upon arrival at the Hong Kong airport.

According to the Japanese Government, the area within a 20-kilometre radius of the Fukushima nuclear plant had been cordoned off and visitors were barred from entering the area. Hence, the risk of visitors contaminating from direct radiation should be fairly low.

Nevertheless, in order to address concerns of these reporters and taking into account their special situation and request, the Government has arranged for them to go through the radiation screening process upon their arrival at the airport last night. The result was that none of them has been affected. The reporters left after the screening. The screening operation has not disrupted airport services. The Government expressed gratitude to airlines involved for making the appropriate arrangement.

The Food and Health Bureau said that anyone, in particular those who had stayed in the areas near the northeastern part of Honshu in Japan in the past few days, could go to the Accident and Emergency Departments of public hospitals if they are concerned that they might have been contaminated. They can consult the medical staff or undergo a body check.
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Old March 15th, 2011, 07:55 PM   #3748
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MRO demands put squeeze on space
15 March 2011
Flight International

With a business aircraft the must-have accessory of China's growing army of billionaires, Jet Aviation is tapping the surge in demand for local maintenance. But as with many things in booming Hong Kong, finding space to grow can be tricky.

The Swiss aviation services group set up three years ago its line maintenance operation at the Hong Kong Business Aviation Centre - site of Asian Aerospace's sister business aviation exhibition last week.

Already the facility is straining at the seams and Jet Aviation - like its competitors - is looking at expansion. "The boom in business aviation in greater China caught us all by surprise," says managing director Nigel Parker, formerly of Cathay Pacific, who was recruited in 2008 to launch the venture. "Just the number of jets coming into Hong Kong this year will virtually double the fleet."

Jet Aviation (Hong Kong) looks after 12 jets as part of a management agreement with the owners. It also carries out maintenance on other aircraft in partnership with China Aircraft Services, which has a hangar at the airport.

However, it is keen to establish its own indoor maintenance facility at Hong Kong - although space around the airport is at a premium - as well as open a site in China itself. "We are in discussions about a hangar here and we are also actively talking about expanding our footprint into the mainland," says Parker.
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Old March 16th, 2011, 08:42 PM   #3749
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LCQ14: Aircraft noise

Hong Kong (HKSAR) - Following is a question by the Hon Albert Chan Wai-yip and a written reply by the Secretary for Transport and Housing, Ms Eva Cheng, at the Legislative Council meeting today (March 16):

Question:

In reply to my question at the Legislative Council meeting on April 29, 2009, the Government indicated that the Civil Aviation Department had, since October 1998, implemented a series of aircraft noise mitigating measures to minimise the impact of aircraft noise on the communities near the flight paths (e.g. to avoid aircraft overflying densely populated areas in the early hours, arrangements were made for flights departing Hong Kong between 11pm and 7am to use the southbound route via the West Lamma Channel as far as possible, while flights arriving in Hong Kong between midnight and 7am were directed to land from the waters southwest of the airport, and aircraft approaching from the northeast had adopted the Continuous Descent Approach when landing in order to reduce aircraft noise impact).However, I have learnt that up till now aircraft noise during the aforesaid hours still often causes nuisance to residents of quite a number of housing estates, making it difficult for them to fall asleep.In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the annual data recorded in 2009 and 2010 by various aircraft noise monitoring terminals on aircraft noise levels which reached 70 to 74, 75 to 79, and 80 decibels (dB) or above during the aforesaid hours;

(b) of the types of aircraft the noise levels of which reached 80 dB or above last year and the names of their operating airline companies; and

(c) whether the existing aircraft noise mitigating measures will be further enhanced to reduce the nuisance caused to residents in the districts concerned; if so, of the details?

Reply:

President,

(a) The Civil Aviation Department (CAD) has 16 noise monitoring terminals.The aircraft noise events recorded by these terminals in 2009 and 2010 are set out in Annex 1.

(b) The types of aircraft with noise events exceeding 80 decibels in 2010 and the operating airlines concerned are set out in Annex 2.

(c) Without affecting flight safety and air traffic operation, CAD has since October 1998 implemented a series of noise mitigating measures to minimise the impact of aircraft noise on the areas near the flight paths. Such measures, apart from those mentioned in the question, include ¡V

(i) to reduce the aircraft noise impact on Tsing Lung Tau, Sham Tseng and Ma Wan, all aircraft taking off towards the northeast of the airport are required to follow the noise abatement departure procedures prescribed by the International Civil Aviation Organisation so as to reach a higher altitude within a shorter distance; and

(ii) with effect from July 2002, CAD has banned all aircraft which have a higher noise level, as defined in Chapter 2 of Volume I, Part II of Annex 16 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, from landing and taking off in Hong Kong.

In addition, CAD commissioned a consultancy firm in early 2009 to examine revisions to the current procedures for aircraft taking off at the Hong Kong International Airport to the northeast and turning south to the West Lamma Channel, with a view to mitigating the noise impact on Ma Wan.The consultancy firm completed such work in 2010 and recommended requiring all aircraft which can use satellite navigation technology to follow a set of "Radius-to-Fix" turn procedures when making south turns so that the aircraft follow the designated flight paths closely during the turn, thereby reducing the noise impact on Ma Wan residents.

CAD is developing the departure procedures as recommended by the consultancy firm, and plans to promulgate the procedures by end 2011 for use by airlines.
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Old March 17th, 2011, 05:35 AM   #3750
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Nuclear crisis: Private jets in hot demand as Japan exodus grows

REUTERS | Mar 16, 2011, 02.21pm IST

HONG KONG: Thousands of people desperate to escape Japan's deepening nuclear crisis have inundated private jet companies with requests for evacuation flights, sending prices surging as much as a quarter.

Some multinational companies are pulling international staff out of Tokyo and surrounding areas after low-level radiation reached the metropolis on Tuesday.

Workers are fleeing for Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea and as far afield as Australia and the United States as power outages and shortages of basic supplies compound the misery after Friday's 9.0 earthquake and subsequent tsunami.

"I got a request yesterday to fly 14 people from Tokyo to Hong Kong, 5 hour 5 minutes trip. They did not care about price. The charge inflated by 26 percent to more than $160,000," said Jackie Wu, COO of Hong Kong Jet, a newly established private jet subsidiary of China's HNA Group.

"Yesterday, a charter plane from Tokyo to Australia one way, was quoted at $265,000, up 20 percent," Wu added.

Shortages of jet fuel and airport closures were complicating matters in Japan.

Mike Walsh, the CEO of private jet and charter company Asia Jet, said they had run three evacuation flights to Hong Kong from Tokyo by early Wednesday.

"It is now ramping up over last night because of the deteriorating situation. More people are worrying and looking to evacuate from Tokyo," Walsh told Reuters. "We are dealing with over 1,000 people wanting to evacuate from Tokyo this morning."

The company had five A330 aircraft on standby, leaving Hong Kong later on Wednesday, he added.
Airbus A330s can carry almost 300 people each. Metrojet, a Hong Kong based business aviation company, said it had 28 aircraft available for charter, including two Gulfstream G200 aircraft, which carry 10 passengers each.

The G200 cost $5,900 an hour plus airport and other charges. British charter plane broker Air Partner said it was likely to post a better second half as the Japan disaster and political crisis in the Middle East resulted in a surge in demand.

"There has been some significant pieces of business ... We will see the numbers affected in the second half, but we don't know exactly what it is (at the moment)," Chief Executive Mark Briffa told Reuters on Tuesday.

Air Partner, whose 'Ops24' division supplies outsourced flight operations service for passenger and freight flights worldwide, has evacuated more than 12,000 people from these regions since end-January.
Asia Jet's Walsh said large corporations and some non-government organisations made up the bulk of customers.

"We are here to help and try out best to accommodate everybody but it's really first come first serve and anyone is ready we will get them out."

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/w...ow/7717506.cms
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Old March 17th, 2011, 05:40 AM   #3751
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Nuclear crisis: Private jets in hot demand as Japan exodus grows

REUTERS | Mar 16, 2011, 02.21pm IST

HONG KONG: Thousands of people desperate to escape Japan's deepening nuclear crisis have inundated private jet companies with requests for evacuation flights, sending prices surging as much as a quarter.

Some multinational companies are pulling international staff out of Tokyo and surrounding areas after low-level radiation reached the metropolis on Tuesday.

Workers are fleeing for Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea and as far afield as Australia and the United States as power outages and shortages of basic supplies compound the misery after Friday's 9.0 earthquake and subsequent tsunami.

"I got a request yesterday to fly 14 people from Tokyo to Hong Kong, 5 hour 5 minutes trip. They did not care about price. The charge inflated by 26 percent to more than $160,000," said Jackie Wu, COO of Hong Kong Jet, a newly established private jet subsidiary of China's HNA Group.

"Yesterday, a charter plane from Tokyo to Australia one way, was quoted at $265,000, up 20 percent," Wu added.

Shortages of jet fuel and airport closures were complicating matters in Japan.

Mike Walsh, the CEO of private jet and charter company Asia Jet, said they had run three evacuation flights to Hong Kong from Tokyo by early Wednesday.

"It is now ramping up over last night because of the deteriorating situation. More people are worrying and looking to evacuate from Tokyo," Walsh told Reuters. "We are dealing with over 1,000 people wanting to evacuate from Tokyo this morning."

The company had five A330 aircraft on standby, leaving Hong Kong later on Wednesday, he added.
Airbus A330s can carry almost 300 people each. Metrojet, a Hong Kong based business aviation company, said it had 28 aircraft available for charter, including two Gulfstream G200 aircraft, which carry 10 passengers each.

The G200 cost $5,900 an hour plus airport and other charges. British charter plane broker Air Partner said it was likely to post a better second half as the Japan disaster and political crisis in the Middle East resulted in a surge in demand.

"There has been some significant pieces of business ... We will see the numbers affected in the second half, but we don't know exactly what it is (at the moment)," Chief Executive Mark Briffa told Reuters on Tuesday.

Air Partner, whose 'Ops24' division supplies outsourced flight operations service for passenger and freight flights worldwide, has evacuated more than 12,000 people from these regions since end-January.
Asia Jet's Walsh said large corporations and some non-government organisations made up the bulk of customers.

"We are here to help and try out best to accommodate everybody but it's really first come first serve and anyone is ready we will get them out."

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/w...ow/7717506.cms
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Old March 18th, 2011, 05:23 AM   #3752
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Aircraft pulls create new Guinness World Records
Government Press Release
Thursday, March 17, 2011













An aircraft pull event jointly organised by the Civil Aviation Department and the aviation industry was successfully held in the restricted area of Hong Kong International Airport today (March 17). The event created two new Guinness World Records for the "heaviest amount of aircraft pulled simultaneously" and the "heaviest aircraft pulled over 100 metres by a team".

Four aircraft, comprising a Boeing 747 from Cathay Pacific Airways, two Airbus 330s from Hong Kong Dragon Airlines and Hong Kong Airlines and a Zlin Z242L aircraft from Government Flying Service, were positioned along a line and pulled forward for 50 metres by four teams named "Centenary", "Leaping", "Forward" and "Next Generation", with 260 pullers variously comprising representatives of the Legislative Council and District Councils, chief executives of aviation organisations, major sponsors, professionals, persons with disabilities, general public and children born on March 18. The four aircraft weighed 474.72 tonnes in total, thus creating a new record for the "heaviest amount of aircraft pulled simultaneously". The teams' names also represented the event motto, "Centenary: Leaping Forward to the Next Generation".

Next, the Boeing 747 aircraft weighing 218.56 tonnes was pulled forward for 100 metres by 100 staff members of disciplinary forces working at the airport, including the Hong Kong Police Force, Fire Services Department, Customs and Excise Department, Government Flying Service and Immigration Department as well as Aviation Security Company Limited. They broke the record for the "heaviest aircraft pulled over 100 metres by a team".

Speaking at the ceremony, Chief Secretary for Administration, Mr Henry Tang said different sectors of the community all pulling together had helped to establish Hong Kong as an international aviation hub.

"With world-class infrastructure and expertise, Hong Kong has been able to capitalise on the dramatic transformation of the aviation industry globally. And, today in our very interconnected world, fast and reliable travel is crucial to our success as a centre for business and as a popular tourist destination," said Mr Tang.

Also speaking at the ceremony, the Director-General of Civil Aviation, Mr Norman Lo said that international awards for the airport and airline operators, the remarkable growth in passenger and air cargo throughput and the safe and efficient services in Air Traffic Control and aircraft maintenance, and the very good result of the ICAO Safety Oversight Audit on Hong Kong, were all testaments to the success of the local aviation industry over the last century.

"Future challenges are many and so are the opportunities, the stakes are high and so are the rewards. The community and our next generation will soon learn more of the abundant opportunities the aviation industry has to offer," said Mr Lo.

The aircraft pull was one of the key celebration activities for the 100th anniversary of aviation development in Hong Kong. Other celebratory events include a photo exhibition which is being held in Hong Kong International Airport's Terminal 1, Asian Aerospace 2011 which was successfully held last week, a gala dinner to be held tomorrow (March 18) evening, career talks and visits, an aviation knowledge contest, 4D movie shows, a "birdman" flying competition and a carnival day. Hongkong Post will also issue special stamp sheetlet tomorrow. Please refer to the website (www.100aviationdevelopment.hk) for details.

Aviation activities in Hong Kong began in 1911 when a pioneer aviator from Belgium, Charles Van den Born, arrived with three Henry Farman biplanes. He flew from the beach at Sha Tin on March 18, 1911 on one of his biplanes, making 2011 the centenary of powered flight in Hong Kong. The Government and the aviation industry have jointly organised the aforementioned series of events to commemorate this important milestone.
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Old March 19th, 2011, 04:10 AM   #3753
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HK flying high in aviation

March 18, 2011

One hundred years ago today, Belgian pilot Charles Van den Born lifted off in his fragile biplane from a beach in Sha Tin. In those days, flying was restricted to the realms of the adventurous, the wealthy and the privileged few.

Today, aviation is a symbol of Hong Kong’s spirit of adventure, progress and success. The lives of almost everyone in our city are touched by the aviation industry in one way or another. Business, inbound tourism, employment and leisure travel are just a few obvious examples.

The importance of aviation is reflected by Hong Kong International Airport’s performance last year. In 2010, passenger numbers exceeded 50 million, and cargo throughput hit a record 4 million tonnes.

Currently, some 95 airlines operate about 6,000 flights a week, while the airport connects to over 150 destinations worldwide.

These achievements underline the airport’s pivotal role in our economic and social development.

Through world-class aviation, Hong Kong is able to capitalise on its prime location. Here, in the heart of East Asia and next to the fast-developing Pearl River Delta region, our city is a natural place for global aviation to converge.

The Hong Kong Government has long pursued pro-aviation policies. Our progressive liberalisation policy on air services has helped to inject vibrancy into our aviation industry and open up new opportunities.

Infrastructure bolstered

We also invest heavily in aviation infrastructure. Last year, a series of projects was completed to enhance the capacity at Terminal 1 and the airfield. Works on the first phase of the midfield expansion development will begin in the third quarter of this year. Completion is scheduled for 2015.

Our civil aviation regulatory body is highly regarded around the world for its endeavours and professionalism. By the end of 2012, the Civil Aviation Department will be housed in new headquarters on the airport island.

The department is working closely with the Mainland and Macau authorities in improving the use of airspace in the Pearl River Delta region. A new transfer point for overflying flights will be added this year to improve traffic flow.

We also have the Airport Authority which excels in managing and developing our airport facilities, ensuring world-class services.

On this centenary anniversary, as we reflect on Hong Kong’s dynamic and colourful aviation history, let us also look to the future.

We expect to commission a new state-of-the-art air traffic control system by the end of 2013. This will help meet the challenges of increasing air traffic in our city and our region.

Way forward

Later this year, we will consult the public on the Hong Kong International Airport Master Plan 2030. This plan is critical to the long-term economic development of Hong Kong. It is important that we build a strong consensus in the community on the best way forward for the airport’s development in the next 20 years.

From the first powered flight a century ago, through the spectacular success of Kai Tak, to today’s magnificent airport at Chek Lap Kok, aviation has captured the imagination and the hearts of Hong Kong people.

New technology continues to transform the way we fly. Hong Kong must keep abreast of the changes and respond to new trends, new markets and new opportunities.

I would like to thank you all for your hard work and dedication in establishing Hong Kong as a regional and international aviation centre. But we must remember that the competition goes on, and in this regard we cannot afford to fall behind.

Chief Executive Donald Tsang gave this address at a gala dinner to mark the 100th anniversary of aviation development in Hong Kong at the Regal Airport Hotel.
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Old March 19th, 2011, 07:57 PM   #3754
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Old March 19th, 2011, 08:41 PM   #3755
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline View Post
Mega Global Airlines - believe it's from the Maldives. I recall posting something about them coming to HKG before.
Ohhh My! Thats just so cutie!!!
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Old March 19th, 2011, 09:22 PM   #3756
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By 凡間的天使 from a Hong Kong discussion forum :













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Old March 21st, 2011, 05:00 AM   #3757
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Jet age sweatshop
18 March 2011
China Daily - Hong Kong Edition

Hong Kong airport has an enviable reputation for passenger services. But it comes at great cost to ground employees forced to work around the clock at low pay - small wonder the airport faces a chronic staffing shortage. Ming Yeung reports.

Hong Kong International Airport has been named the world's best for the fifth year in a row among airports serving more than 40 million passengers annually. But few know the poignant stories of thousands who work on ground crews, who have helped attain the splendid achievement. Despite the airport's exemplary record, the city terminal faces a severe, chronic shortage of manpower.

According to a senior secretary surnamed Tse of the Staff and Workers Union of Hong Kong Civil Airline, the manpower problem, which is also linked to high staff turnover, is rooted in low salaries and 24-hour shift rostering, since the airport operates around the clock.

Tse told China Daily the airport has filled only 60 percent of available positions for airport ground staff.

"This is not always true, it all depends on the staff turnover rate," retorted Alex Chau, managing director of Hong Kong Airport Services Limited (HAS). "For HAS, we intend to hire sufficient staff to meet the operational requirement. However, as a result of high turnover at some periods of time, manpower may fall short of requirements. We do monitor the turnover rate and we hasten recruitment and training to meet whatever shortfalls may occur."

HAS is a joint venture between Dragonair and Cathay Pacific Airways, which provides passenger handling services to Dragonair and some customer airlines. Cathay Pacific runs similar services with its own contingent of 1,000 ground staff.

Chau explained the high turnover rate for customer services officers (CSOs) staff is generally experienced by most ground services that handle companies. Many of the workers are freshly graduated and are just entering their careers. Frequent job changes during the first two years are to be expected. And in the airline industry there are ample opportunities for job hopping at the airport or in the service industry in town.

HAS has around 600 CSOs and Chau said the company plans to hire about 30 for first half of the year and another 70 by the end of the year, according to the latest operational requirement.

"We have intensive recruitment activities and partnerships with institutions to train up potential new joiners. For staff retention, we have various measures in place such as special care for new employees. We have strengthened communication with existing staff, trying to understand their concerns and taking whatever action is needed. We have also carried out continuous salary benchmarking to ensure remuneration is attractive as compared to the market," Chau said.

Chau confirmed HAS had an average 4 percent pay raise in 2010 and the majority have been awarded 4 percent or above.

Johnnie Lau Yuk-kwong, chairman of Cathay Pacific's Local Staff Union, admitted that staff who join the company, then move on in less than two or three years are usually the type of people who tend to give up more easily. "After several years, staff get accustomed to the work environment and accept it. Senior staff are less likely to quit, considering their better salary and benefits," he said.

Lau declined to comment on whether the company has sufficient ground staff but said turnover of ground staff has been significantly eased because of the strict screening test for prospective new employees and the high-standard of training.

Constance Ng was a CSO for Hong Kong International Airport Services Ltd (HIAS) just before HIAS became integrated into HAS in November 2008. She talks about a vicious circle of extremely high staff turnover at her former place of employment.

Ng tries to forget the overnight shifts she had to endure and the difficult, truculent passengers she had to deal with from November 2004 to March 2008.

Apart from the 45-hour fixed working schedule every week, it was common for CSOs to work uncountable over-time hours as a result of severe shortages of manpower. "The combination varies. It can be 12 hours fixed hours straight or 10 hours fixed hours plus one hour OT," Ng said.

Ng remembers clearly how no one in her company ever got off work on time during the summer. That's the usual peak season for airports. "Nobody cared to work according to schedules. The common thing was that we have to tell people we didn't know what time we would finish work," she sighed. Sometimes she worked more than 120 hours a week.

Ng even had to work two days straight when flights were delayed. "Supervisors required us to work OT at night if flights were delayed. It was impossible to predict when we could get off duty once we agreed to help. It could be forever.

"Then the next day we started work at 7am or 8am. So basically we had no time to rest after a whole day of work. We could not even complain about it. If we did, it was no use unless we insisted we were not able to work or reported sick," Ng recalled.

Ng says it would be unfair to say people who are not prepared for ill treatment by others are not suited to become CSOs. "Passengers throw tantrums at you whenever the flight is delayed. I handed them water and they threw the bottles back at me," Ng said.

"I was even choked by a foreign woman who was stranded at the airport because of some visa problems and she had no return air tickets nor enough money. She requested that I let her go back to her country. A teammate of mine came over immediately and took away her hand," Ng recounted.

Company's supervisors, though well aware of their difficulties, tend to make things worse by doing little to help the workers. As CSOs need to record their time on and off duty, they would sometimes find that their duty cards had mysteriously disappeared. Since the duty cards had to be signed when they booked off work, the employees were stuck on the job. It was a common tactic among supervisors when they needed extra staff to work overtime. "We needed our supervisors to sign out when we finished work, they would request the supervisors not to do so," Ng said. "When CSOs did not obey, the management would regard it as work neglect or issue them warnings."

Tse confirmed the union has received complaints about similar mistreatment of ground staff. Some even complained they ought to mark their whereabouts when they go to the washroom.

Lau called the practice "absurd" and insisted that this could not happen at Cathay Pacific. "After all, Cathay is not an irresponsible employer," commented Lau, who has been working for the company for more than three decades.

Nonetheless, unlike pilots and flight attendants who periodically organize work-to-rule campaigns in pursuit of better pay, ground staff seldom take industrial action. Their last big action happened in December 2008 when more than 500 ground staff members who handled luggage and cargo went on strike to protest a cut in their annual bonus. The three-hour strike resulted in major delays to the departure or baggage delivery of 83 flights.

The action was quickly called off after mediation by the Labour Department. Tse said that the government would not tolerate industrial action by ground staff, whose duties are irreplaceable, because this would seriously affect airport's operation and cause huge loss.

Lau said the union, as a bridge between the staff and the employer, negotiates salary issues with management annually. "When the company reaps profits, we believe it should share its fruitful results with its staff. We will keep striving for more in light of company's great performance," he said.

As the airline industry is ever growing, unions are calling on the management of all airline companies to address problems such as unreasonable remuneration and manpower shortage to avoid possible strikes in the future.

"The present airport operation is really inhuman and outrageous. The management should tackle the problems before they become too deep to be drawn out," said Tse.
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Old March 22nd, 2011, 05:56 PM   #3758
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Flight delays grow longer as airport handles more traffic
22 March 2011
South China Morning Post

Hong Kong International Airport may be among the most efficient airports in the world, but with levels of air traffic reaching new highs every year passengers are also enduring longer delays.

Civil Aviation Department figures show that 24 per cent of incoming flights had delays of more than 15 minutes last year, compared to 20 per cent in 2008. Some 21 per cent of outgoing flights were delayed more than 15 minutes, from 18 per cent in 2008.

A senior department official said the figures still compared favourably with many airports in major European and American cities.

Last year, flights arriving at Chek Lap Kok were an average of 23 minutes late, while outgoing flights were 17 minutes late, despite measures adopted by the department to improve traffic. The average delay on all flights was up seven minutes in the past three years.

"Delays are caused by a lot of reasons - bad weather, airspace restrictions, aircraft performance and turnaround time, parking bays {hellip} delays in one airport or problems with one aircraft could lead to a chain of effects that delay another aircraft in another airport," the official said.

In the 12 months to February, the airport handled 51.4 million passengers and 4.1 million tonnes of cargo - an increase of 10.1 per cent and 18.6 per cent over the same period last year. Aircraft movements grew by 11.8 per cent to reach 312,530.

A person close to the Cathay Pacific and its subsidiary Dragonair, which made up about one third of the airport's total aircraft movements, said airspace controls imposed by the mainland posed challenges to their performance, although punctuality had improved since September after measures were taken on the mainland to enhance frequency.

The department said it would be able to handle eight more flights an hour, on top of the current 60, when a new air traffic control system arrived in 2013. However, that may not improve flight times as air traffic is expected to grow further.

Gary Chan Hak-kan, a member of the Legislative Council's transport panel, said delays could make it harder for Hong Kong to compete with cities such as Singapore as an aviation hub. He urged the government to seriously consider building a third runway. The administration is expected to issue a consultation paper on the subject in the next two months.
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Old March 23rd, 2011, 09:37 AM   #3759
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Qantas overloaded aircraft
23 March 2011
The Sydney Morning Herald

AN OVERLOADED Qantas Airbus A330 flying from Sydney to Hong Kong was a risk to flight safety, air investigators have found.

A breakdown in the flow of paperwork controlling pallets of freight loaded on to the passenger aircraft led to it being overloaded, exceeding its maximum structural take-off weight by almost a tonne.

As a consequence, pilots configured the plane's flight computers for take-off based on the wrong data about the aircraft's weight and centre of gravity, which "had the potential to affect the safety of flight", investigators with the the Australian Transport Safety Bureau found.

A delay in notifying the error resulted in the aircraft making another 10 flights before maintenance checks for any damage were undertaken. The delay "presented a risk to the ongoing airworthiness of the aircraft", investigators said.

The safety bureau also trawled its records and found 28 freight load control incidents at Qantas in the 2½ years to last August, with the most recent being on July 8 last year.

The investigation also uncovered a lapse of quality control at the airline.

Qantas had not reviewed its Sydney freight loading centre for quality assurance in the 22 months before the incident on March 6, 2009.

These reviews were supposed to be carried out by senior Qantas management personnel every six months. The last review was conducted in May 2007, investigators found.

"The investigation could not discount that, had those quality assurance reviews been carried out, this occurrence might have been avoided," the bureau's investigators said.

No damage was subsequently found to the aircraft and Qantas has since made changes to the way it loads and checks freight into aircraft, reports incidents and has revamped its staff training, the bureau said.
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Old March 24th, 2011, 05:37 PM   #3760
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