Cathay Pacific COO Ivan Chu stated (27-Jul-2011) debate surrounding the construction of a third runway at Hong Kong International Airport has been "very lively" and "very balanced". Mr Chu added that it is "gratifying to see a number of tourism-related organisations come out clearly in favour of the third-runway option". The Federation of Hong Kong Hotel Owners, for example, said the third runway is “the only viable way” to ensure the long-term competitiveness of Hong Kong. The Hong Kong Association of China Travel Organisers, meanwhile, said that it "will be too late to make a big noise if we lose air traffic to other cities and can no longer maintain our status as one of the most important aviation hubs". [more]
Cathay Pacific: "The fact that mainland China is on our doorstep is a fantastic story for Hong Kong. We have already seen huge growth in Mainland visitors and it’s really just the beginning. The World Tourism Organisation forecasts that the Mainland will become the world’s fourth-largest tourist source market and the largest domestic tourist market by 2015. Imagine the potential for Hong Kong’s tourism industry if we can tap into that phenomenal growth – and connectivity will be the key here as the vast majority of these new tourists will be travelling by air. We want to make sure they come to or through Hong Kong, and that will only happen if we ensure we can meet our long-term capacity needs," Ivan Chu, COO. Source: Company Statement, 27-Jul-2011.
Cathay Pacific: "Tourism – along with finance, trade and logistics, and professional services – is one of the “four pillars” of Hong Kong’s economy, all of which are international, not domestic, industries. These four industries rely heavily on Hong Kong’s connectivity to the rest of the world to succeed - and for great connectivity we need a first-class aviation hub. HKIA has grown over the last decade to become Asia’s premier aviation hub...Operationally, though, HKIA is a victim of its own success. It will be reaching saturation before the end of the decade – 15 to 20 years ahead of the originally forecast date. It’s clear that Hong Kong’s pre-eminence as a hub could be under threat if we don’t choose the right solution for meeting our long-term needs. There are plenty of fast-rising hubs in Asia – some of them on our own doorstep – that would be happy to take away our traffic and the economic benefits that come with it," Ivan Chu, COO. Source: Company Statement, 27-Jul-2011.