Civil Aviation

In 1997, 28.3 million passengers passed through the terminal
at the Hong Kong International Airport, which was 4.1 per
cent less than the 29.5 million in 1996.

Some 1.79 million tonnes of cargo, valued at $654.9 billion,
were handled, representing an increase of 14.3 per cent and 10
per cent respectively when compared with 1.56 million tonnes
and $593.8 billion in 1996. Air transport continues to play an
important role in Hong Kong's external trade in that goods
carried by air account for about 24 per cent, 33 per cent and
17 per cent, in value terms, of Hong Kong's total imports,
exports and re-exports respectively. The USA remains the
major market for exports and re-exports by air, accounting for
34 per cent and 25 per cent respectively.

An increase of 4.0 per cent in aircraft movements was
recorded in 1997, bringing the annual total to 165 154, of
which 81 per cent were wide-bodied aircraft.

Preparations for the opening of the new Hong Kong
International Airport (HKIA) at Chek Lap Kok were
proceeding at full steam. The Air Traffic Control Complex
building was completed in February. Some 20 major items of
air traffic control (ATC) equipment and air navigation facilities
including radar sensors, radar data processing and flight data
processing systems, navigational aids and communication
systems were installed. The system integration and final
acceptance testing of these equipment and facilities were
completed in October.

The first landing at the new HKIA - by a Government Flying
Service Super King Air fixed wing aircraft on February 20,
1997 - represented a major milestone in the Airport Core

The CAD has maintained close liaison with the civil aviation
authorities of the Mainland and Macau in relation to the
development of flight procedures and ATC co-ordination
arrangements. In June 1997, the three parties signed the
'Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Flight Procedures
and Air Traffic Matters in the Pearl River Delta Area'. It
basically sets out the revised flight procedures in the region
upon the opening of the new airport. The MOU was
confirmed at the plenary meeting of the Hong Kong and
Mainland Cross-Boundary Major Infrastructure
Co-ordinating Committee in October.

It was agreed at the Sino-British Joint Liaison Group (JLG) in
June 1997 that from July 1, 1997, aircraft registered in Hong
Kong would use 'B', the unified nationality mark of China, as
their nationality mark but they could continue to use a group
of three letters beginning with the letter 'H' as their registration
mark. To allow time for Hong Kong airlines to amend the
nationality marks on their aircraft, it was also agreed that there
would be a six-month transitional period from July 1 to
December 31, 1997, during which either 'B' or 'VR' could be
used as the nationality marks for aircraft registered in Hong
Kong on or before June 30, 1997. The change of nationality
mark to 'B' was completed in early December.


Improvements to the Kai Tak Airport
Air Services
Aviation Security