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Hong Kong air passenger traffic up 4.1%
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Hong Kong air passenger traffic saw a mild growth of 4.1 percent in April, the Airport Authority said Sunday.

The mild passenger growth was mainly stimulated by a rise in local residents' travel during the Easter holidays.

Resident traffic saw a 40 percent year-on-year increase in the month, while overall visitor traffic fell 9 percent amid the economic downturn.

In contrast to rise in passenger traffic, air cargo traffic contracted prominently in exports to all major markets, down 27 percent on last year. Imports also shrank 16 percent, with cargo volumes from South East Asia and Japan dropping the most.

Transshipment cargo fell 7 percent year-on-year, while the corresponding figures for China's Taiwan and the Chinese mainland saw double-digit declines.

Cargo volume has recorded a consistent drop of 20 percent in the last three months. Over the past four months, passenger traffic fell 4.3 percent year-on-year, to 15.5 million. Cargo throughput and air traffic movements dipped 22 percent and 5.9 percent respectively.

The authority's Chief Executive Officer Stanley Hui said the aviation industry worldwide has yet to show signs of recovery as the gloomy economic outlook continues to dampen travel demand. This uncertainty has been worsened by the recent H1N1 influenza A outbreak.

(Xinhua News Agency May 18, 2009)

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