In announcing a 20-year development blueprint for Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) the Airport Authority said the most interesting avenue will be to build a new runway to increase capacity. It would enable HKIA to meet the city's air traffic demand up to and possibly beyond 2030 while further strengthening its position as a leading regional and international aviation hub.
Another option would be to maintain the existing two-runway system, which would help meet Hong Kong's aviation demand in the medium term only.
Local stakeholders and the public are invited to submit their views and comments during a three-month public consultation exercise which started on June 3, 2011. A series of roving exhibitions, public forums and stakeholder briefings will form a key part of the exercise, which will end on 2 September 2011.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) reiterated its support for the construction of a third runway. "Aviation is a critical part of Hong Kong's economy. It connects 1,300 regional head offices to their markets and gives Hong Kong an important global presence as a major gateway to China. But the Hong Kong hub can only fulfill its important economic role if it has sufficient capacity to grow. For this, a third runway is needed," said Giovanni Bisignani, IATA's Director General and CEO.
The transport association noted that HKIA is rapidly approaching its effective capacity of 74 million passengers and 6 million tonnes of cargo. In 2010, HKIA served a record 50.9 million passengers and 4.1 million tonnes of cargo. IATA airlines serving HKIA forecast that by 2014, 62.2 million passengers and 5.3 million tonnes of cargo will travel to and from Hong Kong