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            september 17, 2019

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Soaring Heathrow tonnage to gain from new China cargo links in 2018


Heathrow Airport Limited hopes to benefit from new links to China this summer, including ways to increase cargo capacity, reports London's Cargo News.
Hainan Airlines is to inaugurate a direct service from Heathrow to Changsha and Tianjin Airlines will fly from Heathrow to Xian - both thrice weekly - the first British connection to these cities.
Meanwhile Beijing Capital Airlines will to convert the current charter services it offers to Qingdao into a scheduled connection.
Hainan Airlines will fly to Changsha from March 23 with Boeing 787-800 Dreamliner, before moving to a larger B787-900, offering eight tonnes of cargo space from September 1.
Tianjin Airlines will fly to Xian in Tianjin from May with Airbus A330-200 equipment with eight tonnes of cargo space.
Beijing Capital Airlines now flies a twice-weekly connection to Qingdao from March 26 using A330-200 aircraft with eight tonnes of cargo space.
Taken together, these three services will offer an additional 6,700 tonnes of cargo space a year, HAL noted.
Heathrow already offers more than 100 direct flights to China each week. Of this total, 55 of these flights link Heathrow to Hong Kong, 22 to Shanghai, 20 to Beijing, 10 to Guangzhou and two to Qingdao.
"China is booming and the appetite for British goods is stronger than ever," said Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye.
"We are delighted to welcome these new airlines and routes. However, it is clear that the UK's access to these Chinese markets continues to lag behind our European rivals.
"Our nation's biggest port is full and new routes from the UK to huge markets like Changsha and Xian are sadly the exception not the rule," said Mr Holland-Kaye.
"If the UK is going to be a global trading powerhouse after Brexit, we need to expand Heathrow now - opening up to 40 new trading links that will help all of the UK thrive."
Heathrow saw its cargo performance soar in February, up five per cent year on year to 133,140 tonnes, reaching a record high for the 19th consecutive month. The increase was attributed to growth in North American and East Asian markets.

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