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More flights to link HK and Beijing, Shanghai
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Hong Kong Express Airways has received regulatory approval to operate flights between Hong Kong and Shanghai and Hong Kong and Beijing.


It becomes the third Hong Kong carrier designated to fly passengers to the two mainland cities after Cathay Pacific Airways and Dragonair Airlines. The carrier will add six more Boeing 737-800 aircraft to its four-strong fleet of the same type by the end of this year.


"It has always been our goal to provide services on these key routes so naturally we are overjoyed at seeing our goal realized ... this is fantastic news," said the carrier's President, Ronnie Choi.


The mainland and Hong Kong signed an agreement last month to further liberalize the aviation market by increasing the number of airlines allowed to operate on key routes.


Passenger throughput at Hong Kong International Airport exceeded four million in November, the largest increase this fiscal year and a 10-percent improvement on November 2006, driven by robust visitor numbers particularly from the mainland, North America and Europe, according to the HK Airport Authority. The combined passenger traffic of Cathay Pacific and Dragonair grew 1.2 percent last year to 5.8 billion revenue passenger kilometers on the mainland.


(Shanghai Daily January 24, 2008)


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