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Old June 25th, 2005, 06:16 PM   #1061
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Amendment Bill to Apply the Montreal Convention in Hong Kong
Thursday, June 9, 2005
Government Press Release

The Carriage by Air (Amendment) Bill 2005, which seeks to apply the Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules for International Carriage by Air signed at Montreal on May 28, 1999, (the "Montreal Convention") in Hong Kong, will be gazetted tomorrow (June 10).

For many years, airlines' liabilities with regard to international carriage of passengers, baggage and cargo have been governed by a set of international legal instruments known as the Warsaw System. These instruments are being applied in Hong Kong through the Carriage by Air Ordinance (Cap.500). Certain provisions in the Warsaw System are outdated and are modernised by the Montreal Convention. The Montreal Convention came into force in November, 2003, and has been adopted by many of Hong Kong's major aviation partners. Our local legislation should be amended accordingly in order to align with international practice.

A spokesman for the Economic Development and Labour Bureau said the Montreal Convention consolidated and modernised the various instruments under the Warsaw System. The convention increases the compensation levels in case of passenger death or injury and damage of baggage. "It introduces a review mechanism to regularly revise the compensation levels to reflect changing prices. It provides an additional jurisdiction to facilitate passengers to take legal actions in the court of their place of residence against foreign airlines. To keep pace with new developments in the aviation industry, the Convention also recognises electronic tickets and air waybills as proof of carriage," the spokesman said.

"Early enactment of the amendment bill would bring our regulatory framework regarding airlines' liability in line with the widely-accepted international standards and maintain Hong Kong's status as an international and regional aviation centre.

"It would improve legal protection to the travelling public and the shipping community. Application of the modernised Montreal Convention would also provide a more clearly defined liability regime for airlines and help improve their operating efficiency," he said.

The amendment bill will be introduced into the Legislative Council on June 22, 2005.
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Old June 25th, 2005, 06:44 PM   #1062
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HK connection plays key role in fortunes of cargo carrier
Kate Watson
23 June 2005
South China Morning Post

IN THE PAST 12 months, Hong Kong has become the biggest single station in the entire Cargolux Airlines International network, accounting for roughly 16 per cent of the company's US$1.2bn turnover last year.

The Luxembourg-based cargo carrier now has 15 flights per week from Hong Kong to Europe. The routes vary but include direct flights once a week to Helsinki, three times a week to Barcelona and three times a week to Malpensa (Milan) before terminating in Luxembourg.

Due to traffic rights, the services to Malpensa and Helsinki are offered in co-operation with Alitalia and Finnair. Other stopping off points between Luxembourg and Hong Kong include Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Budapest, Damascus, Baku, Istanbul, Bangkok and Kuwait.

"We offer a faster and direct service to all points on our network. In the north we transport cargo to Helsinki and Scandinavian countries. In the south to Spain and Italy, and Luxembourg in the heart of Europe," said Kevin Shek, the airline's director of sales and marketing, Asia Pacific.

Celebrating its 35th anniversary this year, Cargolux has operated out of Hong Kong since the 1970s when the territory was Asia's major manufacturing hub.

Despite its limited traffic rights in Asia, Cargolux competes out of Hong Kong with airlines such as Cathay Pacific, which has cargo routes intra-Asia to Europe. In Europe, it goes head-to-head with airlines such as the Netherlands-based Martinair.

Luxembourg's geographically central position between Germany and France served the airline well, Mr Shek said. He said cargo transiting Luxembourg reached Frankfurt faster than air cargo routed directly from Hong Kong to Frankfurt.

"When the high season hits, cargo in Frankfurt airport can be held up for a while before clearing customs and being delivered to the warehouse for distribution. Luxembourg airport is smaller and the procedures much faster," Mr Shek said.

"The aircraft arrives, we offload it, the cargo goes through customs and our warehouse is right next to the highway from where our trucks deliver directly to customers' warehouses all over Europe."

This market-to-market accessibility gives Cargolux an edge in an industry that is competitive and operating under severe cost restraints due to high fuel prices.

Like many airlines, Cargolux is measuring its growth this year in single digit figures, probably about 5 per cent to 6 per cent, according to Mr Shek. Being competitive means it cannot raise rates via a surcharge to clients to offset the fuel price increase.

Load imbalance is another factor affecting growth. More than 80 per cent of Cargolux's cargo from Hong Kong to Europe, for example, comprises manufactured goods from China such as toys, clothing, shoes and electronics.

The demand in Europe for these goods is high, so flying with full loads from Hong Kong is common.

But fewer goods are manufactured in Europe and are less in demand in Asia, so there is a load imbalance on outbound flights to Asia from Europe.

"The load imbalance is getting more serious. If it was balanced that would mean that we had a full load of cargo from Asia to Europe and from Europe to Asia. This is the ideal case but it just doesn't happen any more."

The imbalance problem combined with the prohibitively high cost of fuel, will make 2005 a year of consolidation for Cargolux.

In the past five years the airline has worked hard to develop more destinations in Europe, the Middle East and Asia to better serve its international freight forwarder customers.

Its customer base is now greatly diversified with 20 per cent in the United States, 10 to 15 per cent across Asia and the rest in Europe.
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Old June 25th, 2005, 10:11 PM   #1063
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline

He said cargo transiting Luxembourg reached Frankfurt faster than air cargo routed directly from Hong Kong to Frankfurt.

that's insane.


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Old June 27th, 2005, 04:17 PM   #1064
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Hong Kong risks losing top airport title to Shanghai
Murray Bailey
27 June 2005
South China Morning Post

If the current trend in growth rates continues, Hong Kong will lose its status as Greater China's top airport to Shanghai by the third quarter.

The number of passengers passing through Chek Lap Kok airport increased a strong 14 per cent to total 9.3 million in the first quarter of this year, ahead of the 9.1 million using Shanghai's two airports - Pudong and Hongqiao - despite their faster growth at 19 per cent.

Beijing's Capital International Airport is also following close on Hong Kong's heels and, based on current trends, looks set to overtake it early next year.

Macau has shown surprising growth of near 25 per cent in the first quarter - the fastest in Greater China. Its growth is attributed to two major factors: new low-cost airlines flying into Macau and rapid growth in traffic to and from the mainland.

Shenzhen's disappointing 5 per cent growth may be an early indication that it is now losing traffic to its revitalised nearby rivals (Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Macau) - a contrast to its early days following its 1991 opening when it took traffic growth from those airports.

But a bigger surprise is Guangzhou's relatively slow 13 per cent growth. As a new airport which opened last year, it has no capacity limits - unlike its predecessor.

Within the wider region, Hong Kong is faring much better. If current growth rates are maintained, Hong Kong should overtake Bangkok and Seoul, although market realities are likely to prevent this. Bangkok experienced slow growth because of a tsunami-related slowdown in January and February, which was corrected starting March (when growth was 13 per cent). Seoul's decline came from its domestic passenger count.

Also looking weak is Singapore. Although its 6 per cent growth is better than some, this was boosted by faster growth in passengers travelling on low-cost airlines - as seen in data for Macau and Kuala Lumpur. Singapore is home base to three new airlines: Jetstar Asia, Tiger and Valuair. Without them, Singapore probably would have seen a decline.

Backpacker boon

Hong Kong is becoming a stopover for travellers moving between England and Australia, which up to now has mainly been the domain of airlines which transit through Bangkok and Singapore.

Australia's flagship airline Qantas added three flights per week on the Sydney-Hong Kong-London route after a new aviation agreement between the SAR and Australia was signed last year.

More are planned; the fourth transit flight is due to start in November and three more are expected in the following months - enough to provide a daily service from April next year.

This is expected to boost Hong Kong through an unexpected market: backpackers who usually travel via Southeast Asia or the United States. The new Qantas route through Hong Kong is expected to provide more opportunities for travellers from Australia heading to Europe and from British passengers going to Australasia.

Backpackers travel on low budgets at their destination but tend to have spending patterns similar to other travellers when they stop over en route.

Qantas currently operates 26 flights each week on the Australia-Hong Kong route, with an additional three flights by its Australian Airlines subsidiary.

But that limit is just to the four main cities - Perth, Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney. Flights to other cities (such as Adelaide, Cairns and Darwin) are not included in the 70-flight ceiling.

This will mean that fares will continue to fall on some Australasia routes. At the very least, they will not start increasing.

Qantas hopes that its flights into Hong Kong will also boost the number of its passengers flying on to the mainland, where the airline has been slow to add direct flights - despite rapid growth of Chinese travellers in Australia.

Compiled by Murray Bailey, research director and editor, Travel Business Analyst
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Old June 27th, 2005, 11:08 PM   #1065
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22 June 2005
Dragonair : Silk Road Gateway Charters Take Off July 9 - Urumqi
Corporate Press Release

(HONG KONG) Dragonair will launch a once-a week service to the Silk Road gateway city of Urumqi in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region on July 9. The city will become the 22nd Mainland destination in the airline's network.

The flights, which will operate every Saturday until October 8, have been chartered for package tours by six Hong Kong travel agents.

"These packages will give travellers the opportunity to experience the Silk Road as never before, combing the attractions around and between Urumqi and Xian," said Chief Operating Officer Andy Tung.

"Along with Xian, Urumqi is one of the two major gateways to the fabled Silk Road, a conduit for ideas and goods from the East and the West for centuries.

"The region around Urumqi abounds with fantastic historical and natural wonders, including the Xinjiang Regional Museum, packed with archaeological treasures from the Silk Road, and the pristine Heaven Lake, 2,000 metres above sea level."

Travellers have the option of flying first to Urumqi and back from Xian or vice versa on an eight-day, seven-night package or a 14-day, 13-night package.

Travellers interested in more information should contact any one of the six agents offering the packages: China Travel Services (Hong Kong) Ltd. (tel: 2998 7333); Hong Thai Travel Services Ltd. (tel: 2108 8888); Morning Star Travel Service Ltd. (tel: 2519 8088); S.K.Y Travel (tel: 2808 0833); Sunflower Travel Service Ltd. (tel: 2722 2888); or Wing On Travel Service Ltd. (tel: 2928 8882).
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Old June 28th, 2005, 08:55 PM   #1066
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Monday June 27, 10:18 PM
Dragonair plane makes emergency landing due to passenger trouble

(Kyodo) A Hong Kong-bound plane that left Narita airport near Tokyo made an emergency landing at Fukuoka airport in southwestern Japan on Monday due to a fight between passengers, the transport ministry and police said.

The Fukuoka prefectural police said that none of the 241 passengers and 12 crew members of Flight 361 of the Hong Kong-based carrier Dragonair was hurt in the incident.

The plane which left Narita airport around 3:30 p.m. made the emergency landing at Fukuoka airport around 6:10 p.m.

The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport said the landing was made because some passengers had started to fight inside the plane and the cabin crew had tried to stop them but ended up being shoved away.

The police are investigating the incident and are questioning a Turkish man who was involved in the fight, as well as other passengers and crew members.
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Old June 29th, 2005, 04:18 PM   #1067
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Hong Kong Airport Reports Rise in Profit
Wednesday June 29, 5:14 am ET

HONG KONG (AP) -- The Hong Kong Airport Authority, which operates the territory's international airport, on Wednesday reported a sharp rise in full-year net profit on record passenger numbers and cost-control measures.
The government-owned airport operator said net profit in the year ended March rose to 1.41 billion Hong Kong dollars (US$181.47 million), from HK$386 million (US$49.6 million) in the previous fiscal year.

Revenue during the period rose to HK$6.51 billion (US$837.8 million) from HK$5.04 billion (US$648.6 million). Passenger numbers totaled 38.3 million, up 38 percent from the same period a year earlier.

The company said the higher figures were mainly due to "records made in all categories of air traffic."
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Old June 30th, 2005, 06:54 AM   #1068
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Carriers Vie for Seoul-Hong Kong Routes
28 June 2005
Traffic World

When two airlines abandoned their valuable routes to Hong Kong, their competitors seized on the chance to score the scarce frequencies.

FedEx Express, Polar Air Cargo and UPS all told the U.S. Department of Transportation that they would be the best recipients of the three routes between Seoul and Hong Kong.

"Integration of the proposed Seoul-Hong Kong services into the AsiaOne network would enhance the efficiency of that network, thereby lowering costs for U.S. shippers and consumers and increasing competition," FedEx wrote in a filing to DOT. "It would give FedEx Express the opportunity to develop an express service pattern, with expanded pick-up and drop-off times, in the Hong Kong-Seoul fifth-freedom market."

Nonsense, said UPS.

"What FedEx in fact wishes is to keep its principal competitor, UPS, out of this important market," UPS retorted four days later. "FedEx currently has the most U.S.-Hong Kong fifth-freedom frequencies of all U.S. carriers."

FedEx has the rights to 21 Hong Kong frequencies, including three that can go through Seoul. Known as fifth-freedom rights, the privilege allows airlines to carry cargo between two countries, neither of which is the airline's home country. UPS has 19 Hong Kong frequencies, none of which go through Seoul.

Three of the 12 Seoul-Hong Kong frequencies are available because Northwest Airlines and Kalitta Air gave theirs back to DOT, which requires that unused routes be returned.

"This is an issue not of getting from the U.S. to Hong Kong but Hong Kong to various … other markets beyond," UPS Corporate Public Affairs Manager for International Aviation Michael J. Francesconi said. "It'd be a great addition to our inter-Asia network."

Hong Kong is notoriously restrictive in allowing foreign airlines to access its cargo and its passengers. In a speech last spring, Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta told Hong Kong it risked becoming "an anachronism" if it didn't liberalize its air service rights.
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Old July 2nd, 2005, 04:44 PM   #1069
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By "CXtristar" from HKADB :

KUZU Cargo AB4F TC-ABK


Asiana Cargo B767-300F HL7507


Aeroflot DC-10F VP-BDF


Shanghai Airlines Cargo B737-300F B-2605
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Old July 2nd, 2005, 04:48 PM   #1070
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Thai Sky Airlines uses Hong Kong base to take off in the region
Wednesday, June 29, 2005
Government Press Release

Thailand-based Thai Sky Airlines has set up an office in Hong Kong overseeing sales and marketing of the airline’ s new services to regional travellers – the airline’ s first base outside of Bangkok.

It joined the Hong Kong aviation market by launching its first flight between Bangkok and Hong Kong earlier this year. Starting 15 July, the Airlines will serve four flights between Bangkok and Hong Kong weekly.

The General Manager of Thai Sky Airlines Co, Ltd, Mr Freeman So said, “ We see tremendous business opportunities and room for growth in the Asian region, especially in Thailand, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Mainland China. With the booming economy and growing affluence of regional travellers, we expect the aviation market pie to expand for both business and leisure travellers.”

Mr So discussed the advantages of Hong Kong for Thai Sky. He said, “ With its strategically central location, Hong Kong provides the ideal base for airlines. Our customers can fly to most of the Asian region in five hours or less. In addition, the vibrant tourism industry here offers a readily available market for our services. The city’ s excellent infrastructure, particularly Hong Kong International Airport, and the opportunity to establish contacts with a large number of local and foreign media and marketing channels make Hong Kong a great investment destination” .

According to Mr So, Thai Sky Airlines positions itself as a “ low fare airline.” It enhances its competitiveness by offering a full range of services – such as hot meals, newspapers and magazines and reserved seating -- which are not usually available on budget airlines. The airfare is comparable to that of budget airlines.

The Associate Director-General of Investment Promotion at Invest Hong Kong, Mr Simon Galpin, warmly welcomed the addition of Thai Sky Airlines to the aviation community in Hong Kong.

He said, “ Its investment here further strengthens Hong Kong’ s position as the aviation hub of choice in Asia. Our excellent multilingual workforce can facilitate recruitment of local staff by international airlines. The new direct flights offer travellers more choice when flying between Bangkok and Hong Kong, one of the most popular routes in the region, thus boosting our tourism industry. We look forward to Thai Sky’ s continuing expansion from the Hong Kong base and wish the airline every success.”

Thai Sky Airlines has plans to buy more aircraft and apply for listing in Thailand and Hong Kong. It launched another flight between Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur in May and will start a flight to Taipei at end of July this year. Thai Sky expects to expand its destinations to Seoul, India, and Mainland cities in future.

Invest Hong Kong is the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government department charged with encouraging and facilitating inward investment into the city by providing all the support needed to establish a business presence here.
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Old July 4th, 2005, 04:22 PM   #1071
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HK's Dragonair plans 10 more weekly HK-Nanjing flights - Xinhua
30 June 2005
AFX Asia

BEIJING (XFN-ASIA) - Dragonair will launch 10 additional weekly passenger flights between Hong Kong and eastern China's Nanjing, beginning next month, Xinhua News Agency reported, citing sources from the airline.

Separately, Xinhua said China Eastern Airlines will also launch three more flights between Hong Kong and Nanjing beginning in July.

Currently Dragonair operates eleven weekly flights between Hong Kong and Nanjing while China Eastern Airlines operates 14 weekly flights between the two cities, Xinhua added.

No further details were provided.

Dragonair operates a fleet of 31 aircraft, including 10 A330-300s, six A321s and 10 A320s, four Boeing 747-200/-300 freighters and one A300B4 freighter.

Dragonair's passenger network covers 30 Asia-Pacific destinations, while its cargo network connects the markets of Europe, the Middle East, Japan, Taiwan and mainland China.
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Old July 5th, 2005, 01:49 AM   #1072
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By LV27 from a Hong Kong transport forum :





By 3ASV196 from a Hong Kong transport forum :









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Old July 5th, 2005, 06:41 PM   #1073
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HK Dragonair Cuts Inflight Service Amid Labor Action
03 July 2005

HONG KONG (AP)--Hong Kong airline Dragonair has scaled back in-flight services after at least 100 flight attendants called in sick in recent days to protest their workload, a newspaper reported Sunday.

Cabin crew have been ordered not to serve pre-meal drinks, wet towels and second helpings of coffee or tea on flights that are inadequately staffed until the end of September, the South China Morning Post reported.

They also won't be required to offer duty-free shopping, the report said.

The flight attendants who called in sick Friday and Saturday are upset about low pay and increased working hours, according to the Post.

The paper reported that some Dragonair flights that should have 13 cabin crew were taking off with as few as eight.

Calls to Dragonair, also known as Hong Kong Dragon Airlines Ltd., went unanswered. Contact information for the flight attendants who organized the labor action wasn't immediately available.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 05:00 PM   #1074
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DHL Upgrades China Capacity
5 July 2005
Traffic World

Express and logistics provider DHL upgraded its uplift capacity on the Hong Kong-Shanghai sector by almost 35 per cent in response to the tremendous growth in demand for express services in Asia.

The service continues to run five times weekly, but the Dragonair A300B4, which had a capacity of 35 tonnes, was replaced in mid-June by a Cathay Pacific-operated service using an Air Hong Kong Airbus A300-600F with a capacity of 47 tonnes, DHL said.

This is the second capacity upgrade in the two years since the service was launched in June 2003.

"With the enhanced service, we are now able to offer customers greater uplift for their shipments to and from China, connecting through our Central Asia Hub in Hong Kong," said Jerry Hsu, President for Greater China and Korea, DHL Express. "We have been experiencing phenomenal growth rates in China over the last few years and it continues to be the driver of growth for DHL in the Asia Pacific."

Over the last four months, DHL has been strengthening its dedicated Asia Pacific air network. In March, the company began a dedicated overnight service four times a week between Nagoya and Hong Kong. In April, the company introduced two new direct overnight express services, between Beijing and Hong Kong and between Shanghai and the United States.
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Old July 7th, 2005, 04:48 PM   #1075
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By CPCS from HKADB :





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Old July 8th, 2005, 06:01 AM   #1076
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HK's HACTL says June air cargo volume up 8.6 pct yr-on-yr

HONG KONG, July 8 (Reuters) - Hong Kong's main air cargo terminal said on Friday that it handled 8.6 percent more cargo in June than the same period a year ago due to continued strong growth in the transhipment sector.

Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Ltd. (HACTL), 25 percent owned by Jardine Matheson Holdings and 20 percent by Swire Pacific Ltd. , handled 198,202 tonnes of cargo in June, it said in a statement.

For the first six months, it moved a total of 1,128,624 tonnes, up 5.6 percent from the same period last year.

Growth momentum in the transhipment sector continued in June, up 39.6 percent from the previous year to 30,442 tonnes.

Export volume rose 11.9 percent in the same month to 111,199 tonnes but import volume fell 7.9 percent to 56,561 tonnes.

(US$1=HK$7.8)
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Old July 8th, 2005, 06:16 PM   #1077
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June jump lifts Hactl hopes for another record year
Russell Barling
7 July 2005
South China Morning Post

Hong Kong's sluggish air cargo market rebounded slightly last month after faltering growth across the industry in the first half fuelled speculation that higher oil prices were taking a toll on consumer spending.

Business at the airport's biggest freight handler, Hongkong Air Cargo Terminals Ltd (Hactl), expanded a comparative 5.6 per cent in the first half after a strong performance last month resurrected prospects for the rest of the year.

Hactl moved more than 198,000 tonnes of air freight last month through its SuperTerminal One complex, the world's biggest international air cargo centre. First-half tonnage reached 1.12 million tonnes, keeping the firm on track for another record year even though growth had slowed to half of last year's interim pace.

"If you talk to the players, most are remaining relatively positive. But it is worrying," said Peter Hilton, head of regional transportation research at Credit Suisse First Boston.

"There are plusses and minuses all over the place but growth is slowing and that appears to be an issue."

Closely watched as a three-month leading indicator of economic trends, aviation executives saw global air freight volumes in May post negative growth for the first time in two years.

The 265 member airlines of the International Air Transport Association (Iata), which offer 94 per cent of international scheduled services, carried 1.6 per cent less cargo in May than a year earlier.

In the Asia-Pacific, the world's most vibrant economic region since the turn of the millennium, the volume of airfreight carried declined 2.7 per cent year on year, according to Iata. Freight volumes were also flat in May at the 1,540 airports monitored by Airports Council International, ekeing out just 0.2 per cent.

While a strong performance last month from a market leader such as Hactl may assuage some fears of a global slowdown, doubts are expected to linger as long as the price of oil continues to hover around US$60 a barrel.

"It is something that we are keeping an eye on because most governments expect their economies to slow this year," said Freddie Khoo, vice-president for west Asia, Africa and alliances at Singapore Airlines Cargo. "I don't think it's time for the alarm bells yet. But it's definitely something we will keep a close watch on."
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Old July 9th, 2005, 03:03 AM   #1078
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Cologne/Bonn Airport To Offer Budget Intl Flights to HK
06 July 2005

FRANKFURT (Dow Jones)--Germany's Cologne/Bonn airport plans to offer discount flights to Hong Kong starting spring 2006, reports Wirtschaftswoche.

According to the magazine, Cologne/Bonn airport and Oasis Airlines of Hong Kong are negotiating regular flights between the cities, with a fare of approximately EUR400 per round-trip ticket.

Oasis has already received rights to the route and plans to sell the low-fare tickets via the internet and travel agencies.

Magazine Web site: http://www.wiwo.de
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Old July 9th, 2005, 03:09 AM   #1079
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By "AirCanon" from HKADB :

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Old July 10th, 2005, 07:17 AM   #1080
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Asiaworld Expo Centre to Open After WTO Forum
8 July 2005
South China Morning Post

The AsiaWorld-Expo exhibition and event venue at Chek Lap Kok will open in the third week of December following the World Trade Organisation ministerial conference in Hong Kong, InvestHK director-general Mike Rowse said. Two halls, including a 13,500-seat indoor arena, will be fully operational in time for the opening.
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