Air cargo throughput at Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) registered remarkable year-on-year growth of 10.4% to 397,000 tonnes in March. Meanwhile, HKIA handled 5.1 million passengers and 32,445 flight movements during the month, up by 2.9% and 6.2%, respectively, compared to the same period last year.
The growth in passenger traffic in March was due to 7% year-on-year growth in visitor traffic and 6% growth in transfer/transit traffic. Passenger traffic to/from Mainland China and Taiwan recorded the biggest increases.
The double-digit growth in cargo throughput last month was driven mainly by exports and transshipments, which were up 10% and 17% respectively from a year ago. During the month, cargo throughput to/from Mainland China and North America improved most significantly compared to other key regions. The increase in air cargo in March is also consistent with seasonal trends in the past, albeit with larger growth rates than usual this year.
Stanley Hui Hon-Chung, Chief Executive Officer of Airport Authority Hong Kong, said, "We are delighted that HKIA remained the world's busiest cargo airport for the fourth consecutive year. In addition to running our cargo operations with the highest standards of efficiency, safety and security, we are also committed to delivering world-class, passenger-centric service to all travellers. We are encouraged to note that HKIA was named the 'World’s Best Airport Dining' and the 'World’s Best Airport for Baggage Delivery' in the Skytrax 2014 World Airport Awards.
"In the first quarter of this year, HKIA handled 15 million passengers, 997,000 tonnes of cargo and 93,880 flight movements, representing year-on-year growth of 5.3%, 5.6% and 6.1%, respectively. These robust growths continue to surpass our 20-year forecast, showing the need to expand the airport is even more pressing to meet the demand," Mr Hui added.
On a rolling 12-month basis, the airport processed 60.7 million passengers and 4.2 million tonnes of cargo, representing increases of 6.1% and 3.5%, respectively. Flight movements grew 6.3% to 377,435 over the same period last year.