Hong Kong is offering cargo exporters discounts to help boost trade and business at Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA), as freight shipments take a hit from the current long-running US-China trade war.
“HKIA’s competitiveness and its global status as the leading air cargo hub, Airport Authority Hong Kong (AA) will support airlines to introduce the Terminal Charge Concession Scheme (the Scheme) with effect from 1 April 2020.” A HKIA statement read.
Under the Scheme, AA will contribute 20% of the Terminal Charge (TC) concession amount offered by an airline to freight forwarders for export cargo, subject to agreement between the AA and the individual airline. The concession will also benefit shippers according to their commercial agreements with freight forwarders.
Cissy Chan, Executive Director, Commercial of the AA, said, “Over the years, the AA has been working closely with airlines and business partners to enhance air cargo facilities and services, making HKIA the leading global air cargo hub. The new initiative will help maintain the cost efficiency of the industry and strengthen our cargo volume growth, ultimately reinforcing HKIA’s competitiveness.”
Cathay Pacific (CX) is the first airline group approaching the AA for support on its TC concession to its freight forwarders for export cargo. Other airlines are welcome to join the Scheme to offer their TC concession on a voluntary basis.
The TC concession will also mitigate the cost impact from the gradual increase in air cargo screening requirement starting early next year in preparation for the implementation of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO)’s new security regulation. The AA will closely observe the market situation and review the Scheme in a year’s time.
HKIA has been the world’s busiest airport in terms of air cargo volume for nine consecutive years. In 2018, the total cargo volume handled at HKIA reached 5.1 million tonnes.