1-Jun-2011 8:33 AM

Third runway at Hong Kong needed: Cathay Pacific CEO

Cathay Pacific CEO John Slosar, in a speech at the National Aviation Press Club in Sydney, stated (31-May-2011) a third runway at Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) would be important not only for Cathay Pacific and the aviation industry, but for the long-term stability and sustainability of the economy of Hong Kong. Mr Slosar said that Hong Kong’s airport had become a victim of its own success and that the two runways at HKIA will be saturated within the next seven to nine years - 15 to 20 years ahead of the original blueprint forecast for 2040. Mr Slosar said the Hong Kong community would need to debate the issue of the third runway and he was pleased to note that the consultation process for the Hong Kong International Airport Master Plan 2030 would begin this week. Mr Slosar also highlighted the fact that since Hong Kong opened the airport at Chek Lap Kok in 1998, Cathay Pacific has spent a “huge amount of time, effort and treasure in growing it to be the region’s premier aviation hub”. He noted the carrier's new HKD5.5 billion (USD707 million) cargo terminal, due to open in early 2013, significant investments in new products on the ground and in the air, and 87 new aircraft for delivery up to the end of the decade with a list price in the region of HKD180 billion (USD23 billion). “That’s quite an order book – and it may not be finished yet. Watch this space!” he added. [more]

Cathay Pacific: “This is a good news story – the growth in flights to and from Hong Kong has way exceeded expectations. And Hong Kong as a destination, and as an economy, has certainly benefitted from that. In order to maintain the competitive edge required to sustain Hong Kong’s long-term future as an international centre for transport, trade, finance, and logistics, a third runway at HKIA is going to be needed. As Hong Kong’s home carrier, we will certainly play our part in the debate. We will be vocal in putting forth our views and I guess you would expect nothing less from us. Connectivity with the rest of the world has made Hong Kong what it is today so we must be clear on how we can maintain and grow these linkages for tomorrow...We are true believers in Hong Kong and unabashed bulls on the future of China. And we continue to put our money where our mouth is," John Slosar, CEO. Source: Company Statement, 31-May-2011.

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