Record-Breaking Traffic In Cargo, Passenger And Flight Movement At Hong Kong International Airport In 2014/15
Airport Authority Hong Kong (AA) announced that Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) handled 64.7 million passengers in fiscal 2014/15, a record-breaking figure that represents an annual increase of 6.6% and makes HKIA one of the 10 busiest passenger airports in the world. HKIA was also the world’s busiest cargo airport for the fifth consecutive year with a throughput of 4.4 million tonnes, up 5.5% over the previous year; and it handled 396,000 flight movements, representing a year-on-year increase of 4.9%.
A record number of passengers was also made in cross-boundary trips between HKIA and eight SkyPier ferry destinations in Macao and the Pearl River Delta (PRD), growing 5.3% year on year to 2.8 million. More than two million passengers travelled between the airport and other destinations in the PRD by limousine, shuttle and coach services, up 1.5% from 2013/14.
Four new carriers began operating in Hong Kong during the year, including American Airlines, Siam Air, Vanilla Air and Jetstar Japan. Meanwhile, seven scheduled destinations for passenger and freight services, including Calgary, Changzhou, Kagoshima, Udon Thani, Washington, Xishuangbanna and Yiwu – were added to HKIA’s extensive flight network. As at the end of March 2015, HKIA had over 100 airlines serving approximately 180 destinations.
Fred Lam, Chief Executive Officer of the AA said, “We are delighted to see record-breaking traffic at HKIA, which reaffirms the airport’s status as an international and regional aviation hub. HKIA is currently operating at over 90% of its capacity, and we expect that it will reach saturation in the near future. Because of this, we must continue developing the airport in order to maintain its competitiveness. Several projects are under planning or already in the pipeline.”
The AA is in the midst of additional expansion projects to ease congestion caused by rising medium-term traffic demand and passenger throughput. The expanded West Apron is now fully operational, providing 28 aircraft parking stands for the airport. The Midfield Development, which is scheduled for completion by the end of 2015, will add 10 million passengers in HKIA’s annual capacity. In total, the enlarged apron and Midfield Development will provide 48 additional parking stands.
During the year, the AA received an Environmental Permit from the Director of Environmental Protection for the proposed expansion of HKIA into a Three-runway System (3RS). The Executive Council of the HKSAR Government also affirmed the need to expand the airport into a 3RS. The AA is now pursuing other relevant statutory requirements and making financial arrangements with the aim of starting construction in 2016 and completing the project within eight years.
Mr Lam said, “The Environmental Impact Assessment included more than 250 measures to address and mitigate potential impacts across 12 environmental aspects. We are committed to carrying out such thorough assessments of the project because the 3RS is critical to Hong Kong’s future. It will bring new business opportunities, create hundreds of thousands of jobs and spur economic development.”
The AA remains committed in maintaining long-term sustainable growth and helping protect the environment, in the reporting year:
• more than 100,000 incandescent, halogen and fluorescent lamps at HKIA were replaced with LED lights, which will reduce annual energy consumption by 15 million kilowatt hours;
• several upgrades of the airport’s apron facilities were completed, including fixed ground power and pre-conditioned air systems, which reduce the need for aircraft to use auxiliary power units (APUs) during idle time. The ban on APUs was implemented in December 2014 to reduce emissions while aircraft are parked on the apron.
Services at the HKIA had also been enhanced and upgraded. Highlights include:
• recruiting 1,000 passengers and members of airport community into a new focus group known as ‘Airport Friends’, enabling HKIA to learn more about passengers’ service requirements and benchmark our facilities and services against other airports;
• installing 400 additional charging points at Terminal 2 and SkyPier and adding a further 510 charging points in 16 i-Tables for mobile gadget users in the departure area of Terminal 1;
• launching trials of “Personalised Flight Information Displays” and a “Home Print Bag Tag Service”;
• working closely with the Immigration Department to reduce passenger processing time and minimise delays. During the year, 99.8% of departing visitors and 99.6% of arriving visitors queued less than 15 minutes at immigration, while 100% of Hong Kong residents completed the process for arrivals and departures within 15 minutes;
• introducing airport free home-delivery service for Hong Kong travellers with the cooperation with business partners, allowing travellers to enjoy an array of special-offer coupons, free gift wrapping and lucky draws.
On financial performance, revenue and profit attributable to the equity shareholder saw surges of 10.5% and 12.4% respectively, to HK$16,367 million and HK$7,254 million for the 12 months ended 31 March 2015. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) also increased 13.8% year on year to HK$11,314 million.
The AA also published its Annual Report 2014/15 today, which the full copy can be viewed at HKIA’s website http://www.hongkongairport.com/eng/media/publication/annual-reports-2014-15.html.