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FORMED AND STARTED OPERATIONS IN 1985. FULL NAME: HONG KONG DRAGON AIRLINES LIMITED. REGIONAL & INTERNATIONAL, SCHEDULED & CHARTER, PASSENGER & CARGO, JET AIRPLANE SERVICES.
11 TUNG FAI ROAD
HONG KONG INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
LANTAU, HONG KONG (SAR), CHINA
Hong Kong on July 1st, 1997 became a semi-autonomous territory within Mainland-China. It covers an area of 1,071 sq km, its population is 6.5 million, and its official languages are Chinese and English.
JULY 1985: 1ST FLIGHT, HONG KONG TO KOTA KINABALU BY 737-2L9 (VR-HKP).
MAY 1993: SWIRE GROUP OWNS 89%. (DRG) IS A SUBSIDIARY OF CATHAY PACIFIC (CAT).
JUNE 1993: 1992 = +19.9% (RPK) TRAFFIC, +24.5% PASSENGERS (PAX), +20.1% (FTK) FREIGHT TRAFFIC, INCLUDING +20.25% TRAFFIC TO CHINA.
SEPTEMBER 1993: 1 A320-200 (V2500-A1), 5 YEAR (ILF) LEASED.
DECEMBER 1993: 1 A320-200 DELIVERY.
DECEMBER 1994: 1ST 11 MONTHS = +34.1% (RPK) TRAFFIC, +25.9% PASSENGERS (PAX), +68.2% (FTK) FREIGHT TRAFFIC, 79.2% LF LOAD FACTOR. 1994 = +$77 MILLION.
MAY 1995: A330, 331 PAX, 2 CLASS, TO REPLACE L-1011.
SEPTEMBER 1995: 1 A330-342 (TRENT 772-60) (2ND).
OCTOBER 1995: CHINA NATIONAL AVIATION (CNAC) IS NEGOTIATING 10% STAKE FOR HK$350 MILLION.
APRIL 1996: (CNAC) PAYS 1.97 BILLION HK FOR 35.86% SHARE IN DRAGONAIR (DRG); SWIRE HAS 28.50%, & CITIC PACIFIC HAS 28.50%.
SEPTEMBER 1996: CODE SHARE WITH CHINA AIRLINES (CHI) TO KAOHSIUNG. TO QINGDAO, CHINA (A320, 168 PAX), 2 PER WEEK (15TH POINT IN CHINA), A COASTAL CITY KNOWN AS "PEARL OF THE YELLOW SEA."
1,207 EMPLOYEES (INCLUDING 93 FLIGHT CREW (FC).
2/5 ORDERS (DECEMBER 1998) A320'S (V2500-A5). 1 ORDER (JUNE 1997) A330-300 (177) (TRENT 700), (ILF) 6 YEAR LEASED.
OCTOBER 1996: 4TH A330-300 (132) (TRENT 700), (ILF) LEASED.
NOVEMBER 1996: STANLEY HUI, CEO (EX-(AHK) COO) REPLACES PHILIP CHEN.
JANUARY 1997: 1 ORDER (OCTOBER 1998) A330-300 (6TH). 1996 = +$97.6 MILLION (NET PROFIT).
APRIL 1997: TO CHONGQING (A320) ON YANGTZE RIVER, POPULATION 6.5 MILLION, 16TH DESTINATION IN CHINA.
MAY 1997: ROLLS ROYCE (RR) (TRENT 700) PROBLEMS ON 4 A330-300'S GROUNDS THEM FOR 3 WEEKS.
JUNE 1997: 5TH A330-300 (TRENT 772-60) DELIVERY.
JULY 1997: FLIES TO 25 DESTINATIONS IN SE ASIA, INCLUDING 15 IN CHINA DWARFING ANY OTHER "OUTSIDE" CARRIER.
AUGUST 1997: (CNAC) OWNS 43%.
PLANS FOR NEW $115 MILLION, 6-STOREY, HQ OFFICES, AT CHEK LAP KOK (CLK).
TO REPLACE OLDEST 7 A320'S, WITH 5 A320'S, (ILF) LEASED, AND 2 A320'S FROM AIRBUS (EDS). 4 YEAR PLAN IS TO DOUBLE ITS FLEET OF 12. NEW A320/A321'S TO HAVE (V2500-A5)'S WITH LEASES FROM (ILF) (FEBRUARY 1998), & AIRBUS (MAY 1998). OPTIONS TO CHANGE 2 A320'S, 150 PAX, TO 2 A321'S, 185 PAX.
SEPTEMBER 1997: TO PHNOM PENH, CAMBODIA (A320). TO WUHAN, CHINA, >7 MILLION POPULATION (17TH CHINESE DESTINATION) (A320, 12C, 144Y). 26 DESTINATIONS TOTAL.
DECEMBER 1997: 1 A320-232 (756) DELIVERY.
JANUARY 1998: 2 A320-200, LEASED TO PEACH AIR (PCH).
FEBRUARY 1998: 1 A320-200 (V2527-A5) DELIVERY.
MARCH 1998: TO FUZHOU (A320).
IN 1997, NOW ONE OF WORLD'S MOST PROFITABLE AIRLINES, WITH EARNINGS ALMOST 25% OF REVENUE.
CAPTAIN ROSA CHAK, 1ST FEMALE AIRLINE CAPTAIN IN HONG KONG.
APRIL 1998: 1,207 EMPLOYEES (INCLUDING 93 FLIGHT CREW (FC).
MAY 1998: 3RD A320 DELIVERY THIS YEAR, REPLACES LOWER-POWERED VERSION OF A320 IN FLEET, (ILF) LEASED.
SEPTEMBER 1998: POSSIBLE NEW MEMBER OF GLOBAL ALLIANCE, "ONEWORLD (ONW):" AMERICAN (AAL), BRITISH (BAB), CANADIAN (CDI), QANTAS (QAN), AND CATHAY (CAT), WITH OTHER POSSIBLE NEW MEMBERS: IBERIA (IBE), FINNAIR (FIN), & JAPAN AIRLINES (JAL): (http://www.oneworldalliance.com).
OCTOBER 1998: A320 DELIVERY, JOINS 4 OTHERS IN 1998 AS PART OF FLEET RENEWAL PROGRAM. A320-231 (430) RETURNED TO (ILF).
NOVEMBER 1998: 6TH A330-342 (234) DELIVERY. A320-231 (443) RETURNED TO (ILF), LEASED TO CALEDONIAN (CAW).
JANUARY 1999: A320-232 (V2527-A5) (930, B-HSI), (ILF) LEASED.
MARCH 1999: EXPANDED SERVICE - PHNOM PENH (CAMBODIA) (A320, 12C, 144Y), & TO SHANGHAI.
1998 = 312 MILLION (RPM) TRAFFIC (330 MILLION); 526 MILLION (ASM) CAPACITY (481 MILLION); 62.7% LF LOAD FACTOR (-16.8).
A320-231 (447) RETURNED TO (ILF). TO RETURN 1 A330, TO LESSOR, LATER IN 1999. 1 A321-231 (V2500) (1024), (ILF) LEASED.
APRIL 1999: A320 (V2500) (415) RETURNED TO (ILF), LEASED TO TRANSAER (TSD). A321-231 (993, B-HTD), (ILF) LEASED (V2500).
MAY 1999: A321-231 (V2500) (1024, B-HTE), (ILF) LEASED. A330-342 (TRENT 700) (111) TO RETURN TO (ILF) OCTOBER 1999, FOR LEASE TO AIR TRANSAT (AIJ).
AUGUST 1999: HONG KONG ECONOMY POSTS A 2ND QUARTER SURPRISE, +.5% (GDP), WHICH ON A SEASONAL ADJUSTED BASIS, REPRESENTS A GROWTH OF +3%, AS A FRESH SIGNAL THAT ASIA IS RECOVERING FROM ITS FINANCIAL CRISIS FROM MORE CONSUMER SPENDING.
A320 (V2500) (812) LEASED TO TRANSASIA (FSH), FOR 2 YEARS.
JANUARY 2000: 1 A321-200 (V2533-A5) (633), EX-(MON), (ILF) 4 YEAR LEASED, FROM MAY 2000. +5 ORDERS A320'S, & 1/2 ORDERS A330-300. 2 ORDERS A321'S, & 1 A330-300, (ILF) LEASED.
MARCH 2000: PLANS TO ENTER FREIGHTER MARKET, WITH ROUTES TO USA AND EUROPE.
APRIL 2000: TO SANYA, HAINAN ISLAND (NOW SERVING 17 PLACES IN MAINLAND CHINA). OPERATES TO 25 DESTINATIONS, INCLUDING 16 WITHIN CHINA. OPERATES 120 SCHEDULED SERVICES/WEEK, TO 20 DESTINATIONS. CHARTERS TO 5 OTHER DESTINATIONS, OPERATED FOR WHOLLY OWNED SUBSIDIARY, DRAGONAIR HOLIDAYS, WITH >20 FLIGHTS/WEEK.
1,174 EMPLOYEES (INCLUDING 112 FLIGHT CREW (FC), 385 CABIN ATTENDANTS (CA), & 13 MAINTENANCE TECHNICIANS (MT).
MAY 2000: IN AUGUST 2000, FREIGHTER SERVICE, HONG KONG - DUBAI - MANCHESTER - AMSTERDAM, & DUBAI - HONG KONG - SHANGHAI, WITH 1 ORDER 747-200F, ATLAS AIR (TLS) WET-LEASED.
A321-231 (633, B-HTF), (ILF) LEASED.
JUNE 2000: AS PART OF 30-AIRPLANE ORDER FOR AIRBUS (EDS) AIRPLANES, 1 ORDER (MARCH 2002) A320 (825) BOULLIOUN (BOU) LEASED, AND 1 ORDER (APRIL 2002) A321, (ILF) LEASED. PLANS TO OPERATE 20 A320'S, A321'S, & A330'S, BY END OF 2002. A320-232 (V2527-A5) (1253, B-HSJ) DELIVERY.
JULY 2000: 1999 = 2.7 BILLION (RPK) (+11.5%); 62.4% LF LOAD FACTOR; 83.55 MILLION (FTK) FREIGHT TRAFFIC; 2.22 MILLION PASSENGERS (PAX) (+6.8%); 1,222 EMPLOYEES.
STARTS ALL-CARGO SERVICE TO DUBAI - AMSTERDAM - MANCHESTER - DUBAI - HONG KONG (3/WEEK), & TO SHANGHAI (747-200F, WEEKLY).
PLANS TO OPERATE 5 747F'S BY 2005.
AUGUST 2000: PLANS TO ADD FREIGHTER SERVICE TO KATHMANDU.
+1 ORDER (FEBRUARY 2002) A330-300. 2 ORDERS (FEBRUARY 2001) 747-200F'S.
OCTOBER 2000: SIGNS FOR 2 747-300C'S, EX-SINGAPORE (SIA), TO CONVERT TO FREIGHTERS BY (TAECO), XIAMEN. PLANS TO HAVE 5 747F'S BY 2002.
1ST 6 MONTHS CARGO = 16% OF TOTAL REVENUE (11%). BY 2002, IT IS PROJECTED TO BE 30%.
APRIL 2001: 1,176 EMPLOYEES (INCLUDING 112 FLIGHT CREW (FC), 385 CABIN ATTENDANTS (CA), & 13 MAINTENANCE TECHNICIANS (MT).
MAY 2001: TO OSAKA (KANSAI) (747-200F, (TLS) WET-LEASED, 2/WEEK).
1 A330-343X (405, B-HYG) DELIVERY.
JUNE 2001: IN JUNE 2002, TO XINJIANG.
A330-343X (407, B-HYH) DELIVERY.
JULY 2001: EQUIPS ITS 3 747-300'S WITH (CMC) ELECTRONICS (FMS).
IN SEPTEMBER 2001, TO RESUME SERVICE TO NINGBO.
1,500 EMPLOYEES. (http://www.dragonair.com). SITA: HKGSMKA.
AUGUST 2001: CHINA NATIONAL AVIATION GROUP (CNAC), PLANS TO INCREASE ITS STAKE OF 43.29% IN DRAGONAIR (DRG), BY BUYING SHARES HELD BY REMAINING 56.71%. PLANS TO HAVE MINIMUM 51%.
OPENS NEW MAINTENANCE CONTROL CENTER LOCATED IN THE (HAECO) LINE MAINTENANCE FACILITY AT HONG KONG AIRPORT, TO PROVIDE MAINTENANCE COORDINATION FOR (DRG)'S NEW 747-300F'S, AT ALL APPLICABLE LINE STATIONS, & WITH (HAECO), WHO PROVIDE SUPPORT AT HONG KONG. CATHAY PACIFIC (CAT) PROVIDES MAINTENANCE CONTROL SERVICE FOR (DRG)'S PASSENGER AIRPLANES.
SEPTEMBER 2001: 747-312F (23769, B-KAA) CONVERTED.
JANUARY 2002: MEMO OF UNDERSTANDING (MOU) FOR +1 737-300 (23600), EX-MALAYSIA (MAS), TO BE CONVERTED TO FREIGHTER BY (TAECO), INCLUDING ANCRA INTERNATIONAL CARGO HANDLING SYSTEM, BOEING (TBC) LEASED.
MARCH 2002: 1 A320 (V2527-A5), BOULLIOUN (BOU) LEASED.
APRIL 2002: 1,516 EMPLOYEES.
PARENT ORGANIZATION/SHAREHOLDERS: CHINA NATIONAL AVIATION COMPANY (HONG KONG ARM OF (CAAC) (CAC) OWNS 43.29%; (CITIC) PACIFIC LTD (28.49%); CATHAY PACIFIC (CAT) (17.79%); SWIRE PACIFIC (7.71%); & OTHER SHAREHOLDERS (2.72%).
MAY 2002: ADDS XIAMEN TO ITS FREIGHTER NETWORK (weekly).
ALONG WITH CATHAY (CAT) & AIR HONG KONG (AHK), SIGNS 4-YEAR CONTRACT WITH (ARINC) FOR DATA LINK SERVICES.
June 2002: 1 A330-343X (479, B-HYI) delivery.
August 2002: 1st 6 months = 2.01 billion (RPK) traffic (+13.7%); 1.57 million passengers (PAX) (+14%); 81,000 (FTK) freight traffic (+63.7%).
September 2002: Dragonair (DRG) is protesting Cathay Pacific (CAT)'s application to serve Beijing, Shanghai, and Xiamen. (DRG) presently holds all 18 of Hong Kong's flight rights into mainland China, and asserts that there is insufficient demand to support an additional carrier.
October 2002: Transfers all its Shanghai services from Hongqiao Airport, to Pudong International Airport.
To boost frequencies on its existing all-cargo routes, with the entry into service of its 3rd 747-312F next month. Flights to Europe via Dubai will increase to 6/week, up from 5, services to Shanghai will ride to 4/week, up from 2, while 2 of the Shanghai flights will continue to co-terminal with Xiamen (XIA), meaning they will also stop in Xiamen.
December 2002: Dragonair (DRG) is awarded 5 year licenses to operate unlimited flights for passenger, cargo, and mail services to Bangkok, Sydney, Seoul, Tokyo, and Manila. The routes are already served by Cathay (CAT). To Harbin (weekly).
A330-343X (512, B-HYJ) delivery.
February 2003: 2002 = + HK$540 million/+$69.2 million (+59.5%) (+ HK$339 million): 4.35 billion (RPK) traffic (+16.9%); 3.45 million passengers (PAX) (+19.24%), 193,470 tonnes freight (+59.61%).
March 2003: SR Technics (SWS) has 3-year Dragonair (DRG) contract to assume full technical responsibility for 15 A320's/A321's.
+1 order (March 2004) A330-200, (ILF) 7 year leased.
April 2003: With Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) virus widespread in Hong Kong and China, cuts its schedule by -48%.
May 2003: Asks its employees to take 4 weeks of unpaid leave between June - September 2003, owing to the sharp downturn in passenger numbers caused by the (SARS) virus epidemic in Asia. Passenger numbers fell -90% to just 1,000 a day. Has cancelled 64% of its flights and grounded half of its fleet of 24 airplanes.
June 2003: 2,055 employees.
Received rights to fly to Cheju, Guam, Langkawi, Penang, Pusan, and Saipan.
Plans within 5 years to operate 4 747-300F's (currently has 3) and 5 747-400F's. Is interested in converting 747-400's, but needs Boeing to confirm availability of kits.
August 2003: Hong Kong - Bangkok (2/day).
September 2003: Hong Kong - Munich (747-312F, 3/week).
A321-231 (1984, B-HTH) delivery.
October 2003: Serves 19 destinations in China including Harbin on a seasonal basis, with a fleet of 21 airplanes. Plans to operate to Manila, Japan, and Australia.
A321-231 (2021, B-HTI) delivery.
November 2003: Code share with China Southern (GUN), Hong Kong-Guangzhou.
December 2003: 1 747-200F bought from Taiwanese Civil Aeronautics Admin, that had been leased to China Airlines (CHI). Is undergoing a "D" check and will enter service in May 2004.
January 2004: 2003 = 3.07 million passengers (-11.1%); 269,981 tonnes Freight (+39.6%).
February 2004: Code share with Air China (BEJ), Hong Kong - Chengdu, Chongqing, Dalian, and Tianjin - Hong Kong.
March 2004: Andy Tung, COO.
Frankfurt to Hong Kong cargo service (747-300F, 4/week) that stops en route in Dubai.
Expressed interest in a fleet of regional jets, 70/90 passengers. Recent statements include +5 747F's through 2008 and +7 A330's in 2004 through 2006.
April 2004: Receives OK for flights to Australia after 6/05 as part of a bilateral air services deal reached between the Australian government and the Hong Kong Special Administration Region, which also gives Qantas (QAN) access to a new "kangaroo route" to the UK, via Hong Kong (4/week).
In July 2004, Cargo, Hong Kong - Dubai - London (STN) - Frankfurt - Hong Kong (3/week).
May 2004: 1,823 employees (including 183 Flight Crew (FC), 638 Cabin Attendant (CA), & 34 Maintenance Technician (MT).
5 orders (February 2006) 747-412's bought from Singapore Airlines (SIA), who will have its (SIA) Engineering Company Ltd do the conversion from passenger to Special Freighters (F), with 2 completed in 2006, 2 in 2007, & last in 2008. 747-209F (24308, B-KAD) delivery (again).
June 2004: Adds Nanjing to its dedicated cargo network (8th destination) and 3rd on Chinese mainland after Shanghai and Xiamen.
A300B4-203F (157, N371PC), express.net (TCN) wet-leased for Hong Kong - Nanjing (weekly).
July 2004: Hong Kong - Sendai (weekly charters).
2 A320-232's (2229, B-HSL; 2238, B-HSM) deliveries.
August 2004: Freighter service, Hong Kong to Frankfurt & London Stansted, via Dubai (747-200F, 3/week).
October 2004: Air China (BEJ)'s stake in China National Aviation Co (CNAC), the largest shareholder in Dragonair (DRG) will rise to 69% under a shareholding restructuring.
March 2005: A330-343X (654, B-HWF), (ILF) leased.
April 2005: Launches its 1st transpacific freighter service and states it will double its 747F's to a fleet of 8 within 3 years.
May 2005: Dragonair (DRG) is a Hong Kong-based airline, operating a passenger network, which covers destinations across the Asia-Pacific region, including mainland China, while its cargo network connects the markets of China, Europe, Japan, Taiwan, and the Middle East.
2,621 employees (including 379 Flight Crew (FC); 850 Cabin Attendants; & 71 Maintenance Technicians (MT)).
(IATA) Code: KA - 043. (ICAO) Code: HDA - (Callsign - DRAGON).
Parent organization/shareholders: China National Aviation Company (CNACL) (43.29%); CITIC Pacific (28.5%); Cathay Pacific (CAT) (17.79%); Swire Pacific Ltd (7.71%); & other shareholders (2.71%).
Alliances: Air China (BEJ); China Southern Airlines (GUN); Malaysia Airlines (MAS); & Royal Brunei Airlines (RBA).
Main Base: Hong Kong - Ckek Lap Kok Airport.
International, Scheduled Destinations: Bangkok; Beijing; Changsha; Chengdu; Chongqing; Dalian; Dhaka; Fuzhou; Guilin; Haikou; Hangzhou; Kaohsiung; Kota Kinabalu; Kunming; Nanjing; Ningbo; Phnom Penh; Qingdao; Sanya; Shanghai; Taipei; Wuhan; Xi'An; & Xiamen.
A330-343X (662, B-HWG), (ILF) leased.
July 2005: 20th year anniversary!
September 2005: Dragonair (DRG) will provide 2 airplanes to its mainland affiliate Air China (BEJ) via wet-lease. The deal covers one A330 and 1 A320 for 2 years. (DRG) and (BEJ) are linked through equity and code share on 7 routes.
October 2005: A330-343X (692, B-HWH), delivery.
November 2005: A330-343X (786), (ILF) 10 year leased, delivery.
January 2006: Chinese airlines reported robust growth in passengers and cargo for 2005, thanks to surging traffic, and in the case of China Eastern (CEA) and China Southern (GUN) the gains from mergers completed last year. Air China (BEJ) reported a +13% increase in passengers to 27.7 million, while cargo jumped +10.2% to 732,818 tonnes. (CEA) saw a +37% leap in passengers to 24.3 million and a +14% rise in cargo to 755,010 tonnes. (GUN) also had impressive numbers as passenger totals jumped +56.4% to 44.10 million and cargo climbed +42.1% to 774,550 tonnes. In Hong Kong, Cathay Pacific (CAT) reported +13% annual growth in passengers to 15.4 million while cargo rose +15% to a record 1.1 million tonnes. Dragonair (DRG) handled 5 million passengers, up +9.9%, and 385,000 tonnes of cargo, a rise of +12.5%.
A330-343X (716, B-HWI), (ILF) leased.
February 2006: Hong Kong International Airport set a new daily record during the Chinese New Year holiday, handling a record 853 flight movements January 27, beating the previous year's record of 827. Hong Kong Airport Authority has announced plans to spend HKD4.5 billion/$580 million on upgrades at its international airport. (CEO) David Pang said HKD1.5 billion would be spent on the passenger terminal, while the rest would be used to upgrade air facilities, including the construction of 10 additional cargo stands and taxiways. The taxiway shoulders will also be widened for the A380.
(DRG) will inaugurate direct service from Hong Kong to Shenyang on March 30th. The airline will operate 3 flights a week, on Tuesdays/Thursdays/Saturdays, with an A320 via Dalian. Shenyang is the 23rd Chinese mainland city served by (DRG).
Hong Kong International Airport reported passenger traffic in January totaled 3.5 million (RPK), a +15.9% increase over the year-ago period.
Hong Kong Airport Authority has received approval to establish a joint venture to operate the airport in the mainland city of Zuhai. It did not provide details of the agreement but said the venture would strengthen ties between Hong Kong and the Pearl River delta area. The deal is seen as a potentially important step for Hong Kong as it battles growing competition from lower-priced transport hubs on the Chinese mainland. Zhuhai airport, located 67 km west of Hong Kong, opened 10 years ago but has struggled to attract airline traffic, handling just 753,900 passengers in 2004.
March 2006: Dragonair (DRG) is increasing frequencies to 13 cities, including 10 in China, with its summer schedule and running through October 28. The new timetable adds a new destination, Shenyang. Services to Shanghai Changsha, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guilin, Hangzhou, Kunming, Nanjing, Sanya, Xian, Tokyo, Kaohsiung and Phnom Penh will increase. (DRG) will operate 16 flights per day between its Hong Kong base and Shanghai, while 30 additional flights per week will go to the nine other Chinese cities. Shenyang is (DRG)'s 23rd Chinese destination.
(DRG) will increase the number of cargo flights it operates from Hong Kong to Frankfurt via Dubai from 3 to 4 a week on April 9th. Currently, the airline operates flights on Mondays, Thursdays & Saturdays with the new flight operating on Sundays, all using a 747F.
April 2006: A joint statement released by Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Air China (BEJ) and investors Swire Pacific, China National Aviation Company and (CITIC) Pacific, confirmed reports that "discussions are taking place about operational cooperation" between (CAT) and (BEJ) and "realignment of shareholdings" in the 2 airlines and Dragonair (DRG), the Hong Kong carrier owned jointly by (CNAC) (43.3%), (CITIC) (28.5%), (CAT) (17.8%) and Swire (7.7%). There has been talk of (CAT)'s increasing its stake in (DRG) as it looks to build a stronger presence on the mainland, while (BEJ), in which (CAT) owns 9.9%, leans toward joining the Star Alliance (SAL).
"There is no agreement or arrangement which is discloseable under the Listing Rules," the statement said, adding that Swire intends to remain the principal shareholder in (CAT) (46.8%), (CNAC) will retain controlling interest in (BEJ) (69%; it also owns 43.3% of (DRG), CITIC "may reduce" its 25.7% share in (CAT) but plans to remain a "significant shareholder," and (BEJ) has "no current intention" to privatize (CNAC).
Negotiations between (BEJ) and (CAT) center on enhancing "cooperation between them in various business and operational areas," the statement said, while (DRG) will continue to "remain a principal airline" in Hong Kong and the Chinese mainland.
A330-343X (741, B-HWJ), (ILF) leased.
May 2006: Lufthansa (DLH) Flight Training subsidiary Aviation Quality Services (AQS) is inspecting Dragonair (DRG) for conformity with the (IATA) (ITA) Operational Safety Audit (IOSA). It is the 50th safety audit conducted by (AQS) out of a total of 150 (IOSA) audits, according to (AQS).
June 2006: Dragonair (DRG) flew 450,509 passengers in May, a +7.7% increase over the year-ago month. It said passenger numbers were bolstered by higher traffic from secondary Chinese cities such as Changsha, Chengdu, Nanjing, and Xian.
Cathay Pacific (CAT)'s acquisition of (DRG) and its routes into mainland China, appeared imminent as trading in the Hong Kong-listed shares of (CAT), Air China (BEJ), China National Aviation Company, (CITIC) Pacific and Swire Pacific, was suspended for a 3rd consecutive day, according to press reports. (CITIC) Managing Director Henry Fan told reporters he expected an official announcement soon. (CAT) already holds 17.8% of (DRG) and reportedly will pay approximately HK$8 billion/$1 billion in cash and stock for the rest. It also may double its stake in (BEJ) to 20% for an additional HK$4 billion, according to "Bloomberg News." In turn, (BEJ) will obtain 17.5% of (CAT), making it the 3rd-largest shareholder behind Swire (which also holds 7.7% of (DRG)) and (CITIC) (which owns 28.5% of (DRG)). (BEJ) holds 69% of (CNAC), (DRG)'s largest shareholder at 43.3%.
(CAT)'s only destinations on the Chinese mainland are Beijing, Xiamen, and Shanghai (freight only).
Later, the much-anticipated change in shareholder structure among (CAT), (DRG), and (BEJ), announced earlier by owners Swire Pacific, (CNAC) and (CITIC) Pacific is set to create the most powerful airline group in Asia. Under the agreement, which is subject to shareholder approvals, (DRG) will be wholly owned by (CAT), and (BEJ) will acquire a 17.5% stake in (CAT), which in turn will double its holding in (BEJ) to 20%. Swire will remain the principal long-term shareholder in (CAT). (DRG) will continue to operate under its own brand, but under (CAT) management, while (CAT) and (BEJ) will continue to develop closer ties.
The far-reaching deals end several years of sparring between (CAT) and (DRG) over access to the Chinese mainland. (CAT) part-owned and managed (DRG) between 1990 and 1996, when its current ownership structure came into effect, and set the two on a competitive collision course.
Those difficulties manifested themselves in a range of problems, such as (CAT)'s and (DRG)'s inability to offer competitive through fares into China. The emergence of powerful players such as China Southern Airlines (GUN) and China Eastern Airlines (CEA), plus the liberalization of air routes into China, drove the restructuring announced recently.
Philip Chen (CEO) of (CAT), said that he was "delighted with the share realignment deal reached by (CAT), (BEJ), (CNAC), (CITIC) Pacific and Swire Pacific. It will result in a strengthening of Hong Kong's position as the premier aviation hub of the Asia/Pacific region, while at the same time making a significant contribution to the growth of the aviation industry in China. This win-win-win deal means we have created one of the world's strongest airline groupings: (CAT), (DRG), and (BEJ)."
Under the agreement, (CAT) will buy the 82.21% of (DRG) it does not already own, for HK$8.22 billion/$1.06 billion. (BEJ) will become a substantial shareholder of (CAT) with a 10.16% stake, purchasing shares from Swire and (CITIC) for HK$5.39 billion. (BEJ) and its (CNAC) subsidiary will own 17.5% of (CAT), which will double its holding in (BEJ) for HK$4.1 billion.
(CAT) said it plans to integrate the operations of (DRG) into its group, while keeping the (DRG) brand name separate from its own, following the completion of its acquisition of the airline. Networks and schedules will be integrated.
No changes are expected in the respective carriers' alliance arrangements, with (BEJ) recently joining the Star Alliance (SAL) and (CAT) being a founding member of Oneworld (ONW).
Later, (BEJ) offered HK$3.23 billion/$416 million to increase its stake in (CAT) to 17.5% as part of a transaction that will privatize China National Aviation Company (CNAC), which controls Air Macau (MCU) and catering, maintenance and ground handling services. (CNAC) agreed to sell its stake in (DRG) last week, as part of the deal in which (CAT) is taking over its fellow Hong Kong airline. "For (BEJ), the privatization will bring the operating units of (CNAC) under our direct control and simplify our shareholding in (CAT)," (BEJ) Chairman, Li Jiaxiang said in a statement, according to "Bloomberg News." "For (CNAC) shareholders, this privatization reflects an excellent return on their investment." (BEJ) plans to use bank loans to fund the (CNAC) privatization.
Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Ltd (HACTL) issued a statement protesting (CAT)'s acquisition of (DRG), and application for a self-handling air cargo facility at Hong Kong International (HKG), saying the combination would "create a dominant, vertically integrated air cargo operation," that would "negatively impact airlines, cargo terminal operators, freight forwarders and other participants in one of Hong Kong's key business sectors." (HACTL) said (CAT) and (DRG) account for 40% of cargo volume at (HKG) and that a "process of full and open consultation with all stakeholders" should occur before the airport authority makes any further decisions regarding cargo capacity.
August 2006: Air China (BEJ), Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT), China National Aviation Company (CNAC), and CITIC Pacific shareholders, approved the proposed realignment that would establish cross-shareholdings between (BEJ) and (CAT) and make Dragonair (DRG) a (CAT) subsidiary. The long-anticipated deal, announced in June, must receive regulatory approval. (BEJ) Chairman Li Jiaxiang said the realignment will "create a potent new force in the airline industry."
(CAT) is starting putting its stamp on (DRG), appointing Kenny Tang as (CEO) designate of the Hong Kong carrier, a day after shareholders of the involved companies approved (CAT)'s takeover. Tang replaces Stanley Hui, who resigned earlier in the day. Tang joined (CAT) in 1979 and became General Manager, Corporate Finance in 1994, COO of Air Hong Kong (AHK) three years later and General Manager Cargo for (CAT) in 2000. He was seconded to Swire Pacific 2 years ago as Managing Director of Taiwan's Taikoo Motors. He said he will "certainly focus on maximizing the synergies and opportunities that arise with (DRG) linking its Mainland services with (CAT)'s international network." Hui departs (DRG) August 29, after more than nine years. His aggressive building of the airline's network occasionally came at the expense of (CAT) and he fought in Hong Kong courts to keep (CAT) off routes into China, a stand that was not expected to sit well with the (CAT) board.
September 2006: Dragonair (DRG) was hit hard by fuel prices in the first half of 2006 and reported a loss of -HKD43.3 million/-$5.6 million, a reversal from a +HKD95.2 million profit in the year-ago period. China National Aviation Co (CNAC), which for now holds 43.3% of (DRG), told Hong Kong media that fuel prices climbed +32% for the semester. Passenger revenues increased +8.5% to HKD2.97 billion on a +10.2% rise in passenger numbers to 2.6 million. Load factor improved +0.5 point to 64.6% LF. (CNAC) sold its stake in (DRG) to (CAT). Reports from Hong Kong indicate that (CAT) may lay off as many as 700 (DRG) employees as part of the merger.
(DRG) is withdrawing from the Hong Kong - Bangkok route effective September 27, flagging the first rationalization following its acquisition by (CAT). New (CEO), Kenny Tang said the route "has not been performing to expectations for some time."
(DRG) said it was approved as a Type Rating Training Organization by the Hong Kong Civil Aviation Department, allowing it to offer training programs on the A320, A330 and 747.
October 2006: 1st 9 months, Dragonair (DRG) had 5.2 billion (RPK)s passenger traffic (+10.8%); 1.09 billion (FTK)s freight traffic (+10.6%); and 4.11 million passengers (+8%).
(DRG) will relaunch its Hong Kong - Phuket service, suspended in January 2005, following the Indian Ocean tsunami. It will operate daily A320 flights beginning December 15.
6th 747-400BCF bought from Singapore Airlines (SIA) - see photo.
A330-343X (786, B-HWK), (ILF) leased.
November 2006: Dragonair (DRG) will inaugurate nonstop service from Hong Kong to Busan (South Korea) on January 19th, operating 3 flights a week, on Wednesdays, Fridays, & Sundays, using an A320.
December 2006: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) entered into a comprehensive code share agreement resulting from the recent integration of the 2 carriers. It applies to 7 cities and took effect from December 1 on all flights from Hong Kong to Shanghai, Beijing, Xiamen, Tokyo and Kota Kinabalu. It also will apply to 2 new (DRG) destinations: Phuket from December 15 and Busan from January 19. (DRG) became a wholly owned subsidiary of (CAT) on September 28.
Oneworld (ONW) announced that it will welcome (DRG) next year following the Hong Kong carrier's merger with Oneworld (ONW) founding member, (CAT). "All parties are committed to bring (DRG) onboard (ONW) as soon as possible in 2007, immediately all necessary joining technicalities and processes have been completed," the alliance (SAL) said. (DRG) will be the 11th carrier set to join (ONW) next year alongside Japan Airlines (JAL) and five affiliates, Malev Hungarian Airlines (HGA), Royal Jordanian (RJA), (LAN) Argentina (LNR), and (LAN) Ecuador. Aer Lingus (ARL) is scheduled to leave the alliance (SAL) in April. The addition of (DRG) will strengthen (ONW)'s position in China, as it serves 19 mainland destinations with 400 weekly flights. Twelve will be new markets for (SAL), nearly doubling its Chinese penetration to 22 destinations.
February 2007: Oneworld (ONW) confirmed that Royal Jordanian (RJA), Japan Airlines (JAL)/(JAS), and Malev Hungarian Airlines (HGA) will join the alliance as full members on April 1. 5 additional subsidiaries of (JAL) Group (JAL)/(JAS) will join the same day as affiliates: JALways (JAI), Japan Asia Airways (JAA), (JAL) Express (JEX), J-AIR and Japan Transocean Air (SWL). At the same time, Aer Lingus (ARL) will withdraw from (SAL). 3 other airlines are lining up to join as affiliates in 2007: Dragonair (DRG), (LAN) Argentina (LNR), and (LAN) Ecuador (LNE). The membership changes will expand (ONW)'s reach to almost 700 airports, nearly 150 countries and 9,000 daily departures by around 2,500 airplanes.
April 2007: Dragonair (DRG) unveiled a revamped website that offers online booking for flights departing from Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, and Xiamen. It marks the 1st time passengers have been able to buy tickets through (DRG)'s site.
(DRG) launched 3x-weekly, Hong Kong - Busan service, its 1st flight to S Korea, aboard A320s.
June 2007: The Nordam Group was chosen by Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) to provide "a comprehensive repair and support network" for thrust reverser pivot door modifications on its fleet of (Trent 700)s powering 43 A330s operated by (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG). The aAgreement covers tooling and repair design, program logistics and management of the supply chain.
August 2007: The addition of Dragonair (DRG) accounts into Cathay Pacific (CAT)'s books, along with higher yields and robust demand, helped the Hong Kong-based airline group lift its profit attributed to shareholders for the 6 months ended June 30, by +54.7% to +HK$2.58 billion/+$329.57 million from +HK$1.67 billion in the year-ago semester. Group turnover rose +27.9% to HK$34.63 billion, and expenses climbed +25.2% to HK$26.29 billion. Operating profit was up +50.7% to +HK$3.19 billion, compared to +HK$2.12 billion. (DRG) became a wholly owned subsidiary of the (CAT) Group last fall. "This is a strong result, with record figures posted despite the impact of the drop in cargo demand and the continued impact of high fuel prices. The Group is in good shape at the moment, and we are now seeing clear benefits resulting from the acquisition of (DRG)," Chairman, Christopher Pratt said. The 2 airlines carried a combined 11 million passengers during the semester, with a load factor of 78.1% LF, and yields of HK$0.537.
(CAT) applied to codeshare on new (DRG) services to Fukuoka (daily) and Sendai (3x-weekly), from October 28. (DRG) will cease operating its daily (NRT) flight.
Amadeus announced a 10-year deal with (CAT) under which (CAT) and (DRG) will adopt the complete Altea Customer Management Solution to manage reservations, inventory and departure control.
September 2007: Dragonair (DRG) will re-launch 4x-weekly Hong Kong - Katmandu flights aboard A320s from December 2.
Talking to delegates at the Congress, John McCulloch managing partner at Oneworld (ONW) Alliance, announced that (DRG) will become a full member of the alliance from November 1, 2007. In December last year, (DRG) was elected as a (ONW) affiliate, after becoming a wholly owned part of the (CAT) group. “It will have taken us just 11 months to implement (DRG) – and we expect it to join (ONW) before the Star Alliance (SAL) or SkyTeam (SKT) can bring on board their new Chinese recruits,” said McCulloch. McCulloch added the decision to take on (DRG) was due to its ability to match the best of its existing members’ standards, which includes (CAT), (BAB), American Airlinees (AAL), and (JAL). “This has been recognised with its outstanding success in the various airline industry award schemes. Just recently, (DRG) was named "Best Airline in China" by SkyTrax for the 6th straight year running,” said McCulloch. The deal increases (ONW)’s coverage considerably, as it serves a total of 19 mainland China airports with some 400x-weekly. (DRG) operates to 12 Chinese destinations that will be new to the (ONW) network: Chongqing, Changsha, Chengdu, Fuzhou, Haikou, Kunming, Guilin, Ningbo, Nanjing, Shenyang, Sanya, and Wuhan. In addition, (ONW) will expand to Cambodia via (DRG)'s flights to Phnom Penh. “With the 10 points already served by other members of our alliance, this adds up to an impressive network (more than doubling the number of airports our alliance offers there to 22).”
747-412BCF (27067, B-KAG), ex-(SIA), ex-(9V-SMP) for (DRG) Cargo operations.
October 2007: Dragonair (DRG) will launch flights from Hong Kong to Fukuoka (daily aboard A321s) and Sendai (3x-weekly aboard A320s) on October 28.
November 2007: Dragonair (DRG) officially joined Oneworld (ONW), becoming the alliance's 11th member carrier. Its affiliation will add 15 new destinations to the (ONW) network, including 12 in mainland China. "Our strong market presence in the mainland will give passengers greater access to this fast-growing market, and at the same time, we can help people connect with our growing network of niche destinations around the region," (CEO) Kenny Tang said. (DRG), now part of the Cathay Pacific Group, operates 31 passenger airplanes and seven freighters to 33 destinations, including 21 in mainland China.
(ONW) members (CAT), British Airways (BAB), and Qantas (QAN) opened the 1st airport lounge developed as an "alliance project" in Los Angeles International Airport's international terminal. Passengers flying Japan Airlines (JAL) or (LAN) Airlines (which operate from that terminal), and elite members of other alliance carriers, will have access to the 1,360-sq-m facility. American Airlines (AAL) maintains its own lounge in Terminal 4.
December 2007: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) placed an order for 8 A330-300s to be delivered in 2010 to 2012, Airbus (EDS) and Rolls-Royce (RR) announced. The (Trent 700)-powered airplanes will join a fleet of 48 A330-300s operated by (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG), including 3 leased airplanes scheduled for delivery next year. Both carriers will receive new planes. Rolls (RR) said the engine order was worth approximately $280 million at list prices.
January 2008: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.61 billion (RPK)s passenger traffic in December, up +10.5% from the year-ago month. Capacity rose +8.6% to 9.43 billion (ASK)s and load factor lifted +1.4 points to 80.8% LF.
February 2008: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.79 billion (RPK)s passenger traffic in January, up +17.8% on the year-ago month. Capacity rose +10.2% to 9.47 billion (ASK)s, lifting load factor +5.3 points to 82.3% LF.
Oneworld (ONW) airlines will begin bringing all operations together at Beijing International in the airport's vast new passenger terminal. British Airways (BAB) and Qantas (QAN) will move on February 29, while the (ONW) alliance's other members serving Beijing ((CAT), (DRG), Finnair (FIN), and Japan Airlines (JAL)) will transfer into Terminal 3 on March 26. The 6 (ONW) carriers will use check-in desks in the terminal's Area C.
March 2008: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7 billion (RPK)s passenger traffic in February, up +19% from the year-ago month, against a +15.7% increase in capacity to 9.01 billion (ASK)s. Load factor rose +2.1 points to 77.6% LF.
(CAT) reported a profit attributable to shareholders of +HK$7.02 billion/+$901.9 million in 2007, up +71.8% from the +HK$4.08 billion earned in 2006. The result featured a full-year contribution from lower-cost subsidiary (DRG). Separate results for each airline were not provided. "We are very pleased with our 2007 result, which was driven largely by consistently strong passenger demand," Chairman Christopher Pratt said. "The synergies between (CAT) and (DRG) really began to show through and helped to further develop Hong Kong's role as Asia's leading international aviation hub for both passenger and cargo traffic." Helped by the contribution from (DRG), turnover rose +24% year-over-year to HK$75.38 billion, while costs climbed +21.6% to HK$67.61 billion. The largest increase was fuel, which jumped +21.8% to HK$24.62 billion. Passenger demand was high throughout the year. The two carried a record 23.2 million passengers, an increase of +28.5% over 2006. Yield, driven by a greater number of premium passengers, grew +14.6% to 55.2 cents. Cargo revenue rose +10% to HK$13.18 billion, although yield dropped -7.7% to HK$1.56, as weak demand from Europe and N Asia, increased competition and a modal shift to marine freight, due to high fuel prices hit the bottom line.
The carriers added 12 airplanes last year, including the 1st 5 of 30 777-300ERs on firm order. (CAT) added its 6th 747-400BCF and expects another this year. In May, it will start taking delivery of 6 new 747-400ERFs.
Looking forward, Pratt warned that airlines can expect competition to intensify this year, "while high and volatile fuel prices will continue to have an impact on the business."
Beijing Capital International Airport's new $3 billion-plus Terminal 3 opened as Shandong Airlines (SHG) (flight SC1151 arrived from Jinan at 8:39 am. UK architect Norman Foster claimed it is the largest covered structure ever built (3.25 km long and 1.3 million sq m of floor space). Construction began in March 2004. The airport said the 3-concourse facility welcomed Shandong (SHG), Sichuan Airlines (SIC), Qantas (QAN), Qatar Airways (QTA), British Airways (BAB), and El Al (ELA). A 2nd move is scheduled for March 26 when Air China (BEJ), Shanghai Airlines (SHA), (SAS), Austrian Airlines (AUL), Lufthansa (DLH), Asiana Airlines (AAR), Air Canada (ACN), United Airlines (UAL), (ANA), Thai Airways (TII), Singapore Airlines (SIA), Finnair (FIN), Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT), Japan Airlines (JAL), Dragonair (DRG), Turkish Airlines (THY), Emirates (EAD), Air Macau (MCU), (S7) Airlines (SBR), and EgyptAir (EGP) will transfer to the new building.
"Reuters" reported that airport capacity will be boosted to 76 million per year from the 52 million it served in 2007. The baggage system can handle 19,800 pieces per hour, it said.
(DRG) will start daily, Hong Kong - Bangalore, on May 24, aboard an A330-300.
April 2008: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.94 billion (RPK)s passenger traffic in March, up +17.2% on the year-ago month. Capacity rose +13.7% to 9.67 billion (ASK)s, and load factor climbed +2.4 points to 82.1% LF.
May 2008: Calidris said it reached a deal with Cathay Pacific (CAT) and its Dragonair (DRG) subsidiary, to provide its Revenue Integrity solution to identify and eliminate false and duplicate bookings.
(DRG) will add 2 A320-200s to its fleet, via leases with (CIT) Aerospace (TCI). The airplanes, to be powered by (IAE) (V2527-A5)s, will be delivered in 2009 and 2010.
June 2008: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.59 billion (RPK)s passenger traffic in May, up +19.6% on the year-ago month, against a +16% increase in capacity to 9.81 billion (ASK)s. Load factor rose +2.3 points to 77.4% LF.
July 2008: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.76 billion (RPK)s traffic in June, up +16.4% year-over-year, against a +16% increase in capacity to 9.54 billion (ASK)s. Load factor rose +0.3 point to 81.3% LF.
(DRG) has resumed its freighter service to Xiamen in China and is upping the frequency of its passenger services to Xiamen and Ningbo at a time when it faces increased competition to retain its Taiwan-transit traffic. (DRG) says in a statement it has resumed freighter operations from Hong Kong to Xiamen with a 3x-weekly, 747-400F service. It also says on 21 July it will be increasing the frequency of its Hong Kong - Ningbo service to 10 per week from 7 and on September 1, it will increase its Hong Kong - Xiamen passenger service to 18x- from 14x-weekly.
(DRG) is the number one airline in Hong Kong serving mainland China.
Xiamen, in Fujian province, is a popular destination with Taiwanese businesspeople that often transit in Hong Kong on their way to Xiamen and other destinations in China. But the Chinese and Taiwan governments recently allowed regular non-stop fleets between Taiwan and China, limiting the need for passengers to resort to transiting in Hong Kong.
August 2008: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew a combined 8.41 billion (RPK)s traffic in July, up +15.7% from the year-ago month. Capacity rose +16.3% to 9.99 billion (ASK)s and load factor slipped -0.5 point to 84.1% LF.
(CAT) and (DRG) parent, Cathay Pacific Group blamed the relentless hike in fuel costs for a loss of -HK$663 million/-$85 million in the 2008 1st half, reversed from a profit of +HK$2.58 billion in last year's 1st 6 months. It marked the 1st reporting period in which (CAT) has posted a loss in 5 years, when (SARS) devastated the Hong Kong-based airline company, and came despite revenue rising +22% to HK$42.45 billion. Chairman, Christopher Pratt said, "Global aviation is making a painful adjustment to the new reality of $100-plus oil. (CAT) is reducing other costs where it can, but there is a limit to how much cost can be saved, before quality and brand are compromised. It is thus inevitable that fares for passengers and shippers will have to rise to reflect the new cost of operation."
(CAT) said its fuel bill leaped +83% from HK$10.55 billion in the 2007 first half to HK$19.31 billion this year. As a percentage of total operating costs, fuel jumped to 45.3% for the 1st half from 33.6% for the corresponding period last year. (CAT) said the steep rise in fuel prices was not matched by increases in fuel surcharges. The Hong Kong Civil Aviation Department approved surcharges during the 1st half that covered only half of the higher fuel bill, (CAT) said, claiming that its surcharges were significantly behind those charged by major international competitors.
Passenger revenue for the 6 months grew +21.9% to HK$25.57 billion as (CAT) and (DRG) carried a total of 12.5 million passengers, up +13.7% over the same period in 2007. Overall passenger load factor lifted +1.9 points to 80% LF. Cargo carried, climbed +6.8% to 828,399 tonnes, with demand better than anticipated. Pratt said that "the company's priority at this time is to protect the integrity of this network. There will be some redeployment of capacity within the network, but it is not envisaged that the company will withdraw from any destination it now serves."
Six Hong Kong carriers, including (CAT) and (DRG), will cut fuel surcharges on international and domestic routes by -10% and -15%, respectively, through October and November. Surcharges will be HK$832/$106.97 on long-haul flights, and HK$196 on short-haul. The decision, as well as cuts implemented by some foreign carriers, have put pressure on airlines from the Chinese mainland. Air China (BEJ) noted that it will "make a corresponding adjustment" on international routes but ruled out the possibility of a domestic reduction, at least in the short term, as the domestic fuel price lags behind the international rate.
The Cathay Pacific Group continued to expand and modernize its fleet in the 1st half, adding 3 more 777-300ERs and 2 A330-300s. It also took delivery of the 1st of 6 747-400ERFs it has on order to replace its retiring 747-200/747-300Fs.
October 2008: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 6.87 billion (RPK)s traffic in September, a +4.5% increase over the year-ago month. Capacity rose +14.2% to 9.5 billion (ASK)s and load factor fell -6.7 points to 72.3% LF.
(DRG) launched daily, Hong Kong - Hanoi.
November 2008: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) finally has decided to phase out its 777-200s, rationalizing its 777 fleet around the 777-300 and 777-300ER, while cutting (ASK) capacity. It has been considering the future of its 777-200s for some time, as its fleet is built around the A330-300 for regional flying, and the 777-300 for heavy trunk routes. It will attempt to sell the airplanes. (CEO) Tony Tyler told staff in a newsletter that the airline has been formulating an "overhaul" of its operating plan and that "In light of market conditions, we are looking ever more critically at the business prospects for the rest of this year, and for 2009." He emphasized that (CAT) is not cutting destinations nor frequencies, just slowing growth slightly.
It will not renew leases next June on 2 A330-300s, used by Dragonair (DRG). "The situation is currently extremely volatile, with banks not lending and people and companies not spending," he warned staff. "There's no reason to panic, but equally we have to be realistic about the fact that things are not looking good."
December 2008: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.13 billion (RPK)s traffic in November, up +1% year-over-year. Capacity rose +7.4% to 9.43 billion (ASK)s, lowering load factor -4.7 points to 75.7% LF.
January 2009: Dragonair (DRG) launched 5x-weekly, Hong Kong - Manila service.
747-412BCF (25068, B-KAE) (WFU) to Victorville for storage.
February 2009: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.89 billion (RPK)s traffic in January, up +1.2% from the year-ago month. Capacity rose +4.7% to 9.91 billion (ASK)s, dropping load factor -2.8 points to 79.5% LF.
Hong Kong visitor arrivals were up +11% in January but only due to the Chinese New Year date shift.
(CAT) (CEO) Tony Tyler confirmed at the Oneworld (ONW) anniversary event in Madrid that (CAT) has no plans to lay off employees despite the current downturn and repeated profit warnings. (CAT) is, however, making small changes in order to weather the storm. "We have already parked 2 freighter airplanes. If necessary, more will follow," Tyler said, ruling out the grounding of any passenger planes. Last month, the Hong Kong Airport Authority agreed to let (CAT) delay completion of its new cargo terminal by 2 years until mid-2013. (CAT) also has been trying to sell 5 777-200s, but that effort has hit a snag. "We found a buyer, but it is not able to finance the airplanes anymore," Tyler said.
(CAT) still enjoys an average load factor >80% throughout its network, "but unfortunately we see a decline in first (F) and business class (C)." He does not expect a major Asian airline to go bankrupt; "Most of them are government owned. They don't want them to fall apart."
(CAT) will continue to focus on its Chinese network, which is well covered through its Dragonair (DRG) subsidiary. (CAT) has no plans to fly from mainland China to the USA or Europe. It still has long-term plans to acquire either the A380 or 747-8 but has established no timetable.
March 2009: Cathay Pacific (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 6.65 billion (RPK)s traffic in February, a -4.9% drop from the year-ago month. Capacity was down -3.7% to 8.68 billion (ASK)s and load factor fell -1 point to 76.6% LF. General Manager Revenue Management, Tom Owen said premium cabin demand is "persistently weak" and that yields are under "tremendous pressure."
April 2009: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.58 billion (RPK)s traffic in March, down -4.5% year-over-year. Capacity dropped -0.8% to 9.59 billion (ASK)s and load factor fell -3 points to 79.1% LF.
On the heels of a -HK$8.56 billion/-$1.1 billion 2008 loss that represented its first full-year deficit in a decade, (CAT) said that it will confront a "toxic combination" of challenges with measures including a -8% capacity cut beginning next month and unpaid leave for employees. "We anticipate an extremely challenging year in 2009 and a toxic combination of low fares, a big drop in premium travel, weak cargo loads, poor yields and a negative currency impact is making it more important than ever to preserve cash," (CEO) Tony Tyler said. "We have no option but to take measures that will help us weather the current storm and maintain the long-term sustainability of the business." He said a "marked deterioration" in 1st-quarter business included a -22.4% year-over-year decline in revenue.
The -8% cut in passenger capacity will include a reduction of flights to 11 destinations, additional flights to Denpasar, Sapporo and Bahrain/Riyadh and a -13% cut at (DRG), which will suspend service to Fukuoka, Dalian, Shenyang, Guilin and Xi'an.
Cargo capacity will be lowered -11%, with weekly freighter flights falling to 84 from last year's peak of 124. (CAT) will park 2 more 747-400BCFs, bringing the total to 5, and lease an additional 747-400BCF to Air Hong Kong (AHK). It also is negotiating the sale of 777-200s.
The leave scheme will involve all 17,000 (CAT) employees, each of whom will be asked to take 1 to 4 weeks of unpaid time off from May 1 to April 30, 2010. Duration will depend on seniority, with newer employees required to take less leave. Some 65.6% of (CAT) staff will take just 1 week, while 15.9% will take 2, 11.5% will take 3 and 7% will take all 4, losing -15.4% of their salary over a 6-month period. Senior executive staff will be foregoing bonuses, (CAT) said. "The pain will be shared from the top down. That means that no matter what level an employee is, everyone more senior is taking more pain. Support from all staff is essential," Tyler said.
(CAT) said approximately 14,000 employees from both (CAT) and (DRG) - - about 70% of the company's total workforce - - have consented to the unpaid leave scheme. (CAT) said the deadline for consent has been extended from April 30 to May 10 in order to give on-duty staff "more time in which to consider the details of the scheme" that will require 1 to 4 weeks of unpaid leave depending on seniority. Notably, just 14% of (CAT) pilots (FC) responded in the affirmative, compared to 55% at (DRG).
May 2009: Cathay Pacific (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) reported a +8.8% rise to 2.2 million passengers enplaned in April. Traffic increased +5.3% to 7.88 billion (RPK)s on a +1.1% lift in capacity to 9.54 billion (ASK)s, resulting in load factor heightening +3.2 points to 82.6% LF. The increase was mainly owing to the Easter holiday falling in April this year and fare stimulation, the airline group said. "The slump in demand for premium traffic continued unabated across the network and . . . combined with lower fares and adverse currency movements again placed significant downward pressure on yields," it noted.
Cargo dropped -13.3% to 123,179 tonnes. For the 1st 4 months of the year, tonnage fell -17.3%, outpacing a -13.6% capacity cut. General Manager Cargo Sales & Marketing, Titus Diu said, "the cargo story for April was very much in line with the first quarter of 2009, with continued weakness in the global airfreight business overall and soft demand out of Hong Kong and the main manufacturing areas in China."
Hong Kong International airport (HKG) is lowering usage fees and allowing interest-free deferred bill payments. Landing and parking charges will lower by -10% for the remainder of 2009, while half of the rental payments due for lounges, office space, ticket counters and storage can be deferred interest free for up to 1=-year. (HKG) traffic fell -7% during the 1st quarter, with cargo traffic declining -23%.
June 2009: In May, Cathay Pacific (CAT) and its Dragonair (DRG) subsidiary flew 7.09 billion (RPK)s traffic, down -6.7% from the year-ago month, on a -7.5% decline in passenger numbers to 2 million. Capacity fell -4.7% to 9.35 billion (ASK)s, reducing load factor -1.6 points to 75.8% LF.
(DRG) will launch 2x-daily, Hong Kong - Guangzhou service September 14 aboard A320s/A321s.
July 2009: Dragonair (DRG) will operate its Hong Kong - Kathmandu service via Dhaka October 1 (increasing to 5x-weekly from 3x-weekly) aboard an A330.
(DRG) appointed Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) General Manager Sales, Pearl River Delta & Hong Kong, James Tong as its new (CEO), effective August 17, succeeding Kenny Tang. Tong joined (CAT) in 1987 and was (DRG)'s Regional Manager Northern China in 1994 through 1996.
August 2009: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew a combined 7.72 billion (RPK)s traffic in July, down -8.2% year-over-year. Capacity dropped -7.5% to 9.25 billion (ASK)s and load factor was down -0.6 point to 83.5% LF.
(CAT) returned to profit in the 1st half of 2009 thanks to fuel hedge gains and cost/capacity cuts, posting a +HK$812 million/+$104.8 million surplus compared to a -HK$760 million in the year-ago semester.
6-month revenue plunged -27.1% year-over-year to HK$30.92 billion, but expenses fell -32.2% to HK$28.88 billion as (CAT) reduced capacity, negotiated concessions from employees and benefited from a HK$2.1 billion unrealized mark-to-market fuel hedge gain. Operating result swung to a +HK$2.04 billion profit from a -HK$698 million loss in the 1st half of 2008. "There are cautious signs that the fall in demand has bottomed but there is, as yet, no indication when a sustained pickup will begin. The recent strengthening of fuel prices is a concern," Chairman Christopher Pratt said. "(CAT) has taken appropriate measures to get through the current slump and will take further measures as necessary should the cost and demand not improve."
From May, (CAT) reduced passenger capacity by -8% and cargo capacity by -13%, while its Dragonair (DRG) subsidiary reduced (ASK)s by -13% and cut 6 destinations from its network. It also reached agreements on 1 to 4 weeks of unpaid leave with its entire employee group.
It added 2 777-300ERs and the last of 6 747-400ERFs during the semester and retired the last of its 747F Classic freighters. Its 6 747-400BCFs also have been removed from service. (CAT) said it "continues to work with airplane manufacturers with a view to deferring some of the deliveries of airplanes on firm order and has deferred other capital expenditure." As of June 30, (CAT) operated 123 airplanes and had 37 on firm order. Dragonair (DRG) had 31 planes with 2 on order, and the group's Air Hong Kong (AHK) subsidiary flew 8 A300-600Fs.
6-month passenger numbers fell -4.2% to 11.9 million and load factor was down -1.5 points to 78.5% LF. Yield plummeted -19.7% to 49.7 HK cents. Total ATKs fell -8.7% to 11.04 billion and cost per (ATK) declined -25.7% to HK$2.57, but rose +4.8% to HK$1.98, excluding fuel.
September 2009: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.89 billion (RPK)s traffic in August, a +1.9% rise from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -5% to 9.39 billion (ASK)s, lifting load factor +5.7 points to 84.1% LF.
(ARINC) said Air China (BEJ), Air Macau (MCU), Asiana Airlines (AAR), (CAT), China Southern Airlines (GUN), (DRG) and Korean Air (KAL) signed up to use its AviNet Airport wide-area network service, which is available to carriers using its Muse common-use passenger systems.
November 2009: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.3 billion (RPK)s traffic in October, down -2% year-over-year, while capacity dropped -10.1% to 8.87 billion (ASK)s. Load factor rose +6.8 points to 82.3% LF.
(CAT) will offer an economy (Y) seat with extra legroom on long-haul flights for $100 per sector beginning December 1 and on flights to regional and Chinese destination for $25 from January 1. Premium loyalty program members will continue to have access to the seats for free. (CAT) said there will be 2 to 4 seats available on "most flights." The offer is available on (DRG) service as well.
December 2009: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.28 billion (RPK)s traffic in November, up +2% year-over-year, against a -5.9% cut in capacity to 8.87 billion (ASK)s. Load factor climbed +6.3 points to 82% LF.
January 2010: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 8.11 billion (RPK)s traffic in December, a +4% lift year-over-year, against a -2% cut in capacity to 9.67 billion (ASK)s. Load factor climbed +4.9 points to 83.9% LF.
February 2010: Air China (BEJ) and Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) plan to launch their cargo joint venture (JV), an industry insider said. (BEJ) is expected to be the controlling stakeholder with a 51% stake while (CAT) will hold the remainder. (BEJ) plans to launch the venture based on the assets of its Air China Cargo (CAO) subsidiary. To prepare, it increased its stake in the cargo company to 100% with the CNY718 million/$105 million purchase of Beijing Capital Airport Holding Company's 24% share last spring. (CAO) was launched in 2003 with registered capital of CNY2.2 billion. It operates 7 747Fs. (CAT) reportedly will provide an additional 5 or 6 747Fs to the joint venture. (CAT) had 25 747Fs as of June 30, 2009, with a 26th operated by its Dragonair (DRG) subsidiary.
The new joint venture will be based in Shanghai in an effort to tap the Yangtze River Delta that is one of China's most vibrant economic regions. Shanghai Pudong ranked as the world's 3rd-largest airport in traffic volume last year. (UPS) and (DHL) both operate hubs there.
March 2010: The Cathay Pacific Group returned to profit in 2009, posting a +HK$4.69 billion/+$604.9 million surplus that was reversed from a restated 2008 loss of -HK$8.7 billion, as fuel hedges, one-time gains and capacity and cost cuts boosted the bottom line.
Revenue dropped -22.6% to HK$66.98 billion, but the company benefitted from fuel hedge gains of +HK$2.76 billion and +HK$1.25 billion from the sale of a 12.5% stake in Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Company (HAECO).
"The global slump resulted in extremely challenging business conditions. While there was some pickup in both our passenger and cargo business toward the end of the year overall, we saw a deep downturn in our key markets which in turn led to sharply reduced revenues," Chairman Christopher Pratt said. "We took a number of measures to help us address the steep downturn in business, including reducing capacity in both Cathay Pacific (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG), reducing operating costs and capital expenditure, introducing an unpaid leave scheme for staff, parking a number of airplanes, working to get concessions from suppliers and requesting a deferral of new deliveries from airplane manufacturers," Pratt added.
Operating expenses were slashed -33.7% to HK$62.5 billion and operating result swung to a +HK$5.73 billion profit from a -HK$8.03 billion deficit in 2008. (CAT) and (DRG) carried a combined 24.6 million passengers last year, down -1.6%, while passenger yield plunged -19.5% to HK$0.511. Load factor rose +1.7 points to 80.5% LF as capacity was cut -3.7% to 111.17 billion (ASK)s.
As of year end, (CAT) operated 32 A330-300s, 15 A340-300s, 23 747-400s, 5 777-200s, 12 777-300s, 14 777-300ERs, 6 747-400Fs, 13 747-400BCFs and 6 747-400ERFs. On 747-400 is coming off lease this year, and (CAT) expects to take delivery of 1 A330-300 and 4 777-300ERs. (DRG) operates 9 A320-200s, 6 A321-200s and 14 A330-300s. 2 A320-200s are scheduled for delivery in 2010 and leases will expire on 1 of each type. The group's Air Hong Kong (AHK) subsidiary flies 8 A300-600Fs.
"We remain cautious about the prospects for 2010," Pratt said. "Revenues and yields remain below levels experienced prior to the recent downturn and there has not yet been a sustained improvement in premium passenger demand. That said, we have many things working in our favor which will help to put us in a stronger position if the current recovery in the world economy is sustained."
April 2010: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 8.08 billion (RPK)s traffic in March, a +6.6% rise year-over-year. Capacity was cut -1.6% to 9.43 billion (ASK)s, lifting load factor +6.6 points to 85.7% LF.
June 2010: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 7.82 billion (RPK)s traffic in May, a +10.3% rise year-over-year. Capacity grew +2.8% to 9.62 billion (ASK)s, lifting load factor +5.5 points to 81.3% LF.
A320-232 (4247, B-HSP), delivery, ex-(F-WWDV).
July 2010: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew a combined 7.97 billion (RPK)s traffic in June, up +19.6% from the year-ago month. Capacity rose +7.7% to 9.34 billion (ASK)s and load factor improved by +8.6 points to 85.4% LF.
(CAT) and Panasonic Avionics signed a Memo of Understanding (MOU) to equip all (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) passenger aircraft with full broadband connectivity.
(CAT) is the 1st airline in Asia to announce its intention to deploy Panasonic's Global Communications Suite and also the 1st globally to signal its intention to provide the solution across its full fleet. Services will launch from early 2012, subject to regulatory approval. "While final terms are still being negotiated, the (MOU) allows the parties to immediately begin developing the plan to provide connectivity for passengers together with promotional, sponsorship and e-commerce opportunities for Cathay Pacific (CAT) partner brands," (CAT) said.
Panasonic's package will comprise the eXConnect broadband service and eXPhone (GSM) phone service. It will feature a CX-branded free-of-charge entertainment portal accessible through all passenger devices and seat back screens that will include a range of content updated during the flight. It will allow access to airline and partner sites and enable e-commerce, airline-specific advertising and live television with a pay-per-view capability for special events.
EXConnect will provide two-way broadband connectivity supporting a wide range of passenger and crew applications, including Internet access, voice, data and the ability to monitor and transmit airline operational data in real time. The eXPhone service will be offered in collaboration with AeroMobile's (GSM) mobile phone technology and allow passengers to use their mobile phones, smartphones and BlackBerry devices on board to make voice calls, send Small Messaging System (SMS) text messages or utilize data services and stream content wirelessly to their iPods, iPhones and iPads.
(CAT) Head of Product Alex McGowan said "Connectivity will form an important part of our overall customer proposition. Having that connectivity integrated closely with our video-on-demand entertainment system is especially valuable as it means that all passengers will be able to use the service. We believe that being connected is now an expected part of everyday life, not just for business purposes but also to stay in touch with family and friends."
Dragonair (DRG) will resume daily, Hong Kong - Fukuoka service on October 31 aboard an A320.
August 2010: A330-342 (109, B-HLE), ex-(VR-HLE) delivery.
September 2010: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew 8.49 billion (RPK)s traffic in August, a +7.6% increase from the year-ago month. Capacity rose +7.1% to 10.06 billion (ASK)s as load factor rose +0.3 points to 84.4% LF.
October 2010: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flew a combined 7.92 billion (RPK)s in September, up +15.2% from the year-ago month. Capacity rose +12.9% to 9.69 billion (ASK)s and load factor improved by +1.6 points to 81.8% LF.
November 2010: Dragonair (DRG) will begin operating 2x-weekly seasonal Hong Kong – Okinawa service as year-round November 21 aboard an A330. It will resume operating seasonal 3x-weekly, Hong Kong - Sendai service December 1 to February 27 using an A320.
December 2010: In a step that highlights Asia's rapidly growing role in commercial aviation, (IATA) (ITA)'s Board of Governors announced it will recommend that Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) (CEO) Tony Tyler succeed Giovanni Bisignani as leader of (IATA) when Bisignani retires following the 2011 Annual General Meeting (AGM) next June.
Tyler, 55, becomes the 1st head of an Asia/Pacific-based airline to lead (IATA), which has had just 6 Director Generals (including Bisignani) since its inception in 1946, all of them from Europe or North America. Tyler will be succeeded at Cathay by (COO) John Sosar, who has held that position since July 2007. Slosar, 54, joined Swire in 1980 and worked with the group's Aviation Division in Hong Kong, the USA and Thailand. He was appointed Managing Director of (HAECO) in 1996 and Managing Director of Swire Pacific's Beverages Division in 1998. Tyler will step down from (CAT) on March 31.
Tyler has led (CAT) since 2007 and is also Chairman of (CAT) affiliate, Dragonair (DRG). He joined (CAT) parent, the Swire Group in 1977 and moved to (CAT) a year later. He served as (IATA) Chairman in 2009 - 2010.
"Tony’s leadership of Cathay Pacific (CAT) through challenging times prepares him well for the job. His knowledge of Asia will help (IATA) take advantage of opportunities in the industry’s largest market," said David Bronczek (CEO) of FedEx Express (FED) and Chairman of the (IATA) Board of Governors.
In succeeding the dynamic Bisignani, Tyler will have some large shoes to fill. "Since taking the helm of (IATA) in 2002, Giovanni rebuilt (IATA), restored its relevance and set a very high benchmark for its leadership," Bronczek said, adding, "We are absolutely confident that Tony is the right person to take the association to even greater heights." Tyler said, "I am excited at the prospect of leading (IATA) and fully mindful of the responsibility that this important position bears. Giovanni has made (IATA)'s role critical to the industry by successfully managing (IATA)'s $300 billion financial systems while delivering important industry-wide changes."
January 2011: Global Logistics System was appointed services partner for Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) for the implementation of 100% air waybill (AWB) in Hong Kong. The official cutover on January 1, made (CAT)/(DRG) the 1st operating out of Hong Kong to fully switch to the e-(AWB).
February 2011: Dragonair (DRG) said it will hire and train approximately 300 flight attendants (CA) in 2011.
March 2011: Dragonair (DRG) will for the summer season increase Hong Kong (HKG) service to Kaohsiung (32x-weekly to 42), Xiamen (3x-daily to 4x-daily), and Ningbo (7x-weekly to 10x-) on March 27. It will also increase service from (HKG) to Chongqing (to daily) and Nanjing and Chengdu (to 2x-daily), for the season.
April 2011: Dragonair (DRG) will decrease daily, Hong Kong (HKG) - Fukuoka service to 5x-weekly May 1 - May 31 and will resume 2x-weekly, (HKG) - Okinawa service on July 3.
August 2011: Patrick Yeung succeeds James Tong as (CEO) of Dragonair (DRG).
INCDT: Hong Kong’s Civil Aviation Department (CAD) said it is conducting an investigation into a recent loss of separation incident between a Cathay Pacific (CAT) 777-300ER and subsidiary Dragonair (DRG) A330-300. According to the (CAD), the 2 airplanes came within 1 nm/2 km of each other in diverging turns while on approach to Hong Kong International.
The international standard for separation between airplanes is 5 nm/9.26 km horizontally or 1,000 ft/304 m vertically. The (CAD) described the weather that day as “inclement.”
The traffic collision avoidance systems (TCAS) on both airplanes activated and the crew took evasive action. According to the (CAD) report, the (DRG) pilot (FC) put his airplane, carrying 284 passengers and 12 crew, into a climb while the (CAT) airplane, with 299 passengers and 18 crew, descended.
“As the avoiding actions by both airplanes were executed in a controlled manner and both pilots (FC) had the other airplane in sight well in advance, there was no risk of collision,” the (CAD) said.
The (CAD) will conduct a comprehensive investigation into all aspects, including Air Traffic Control (ATC) procedures, manning arrangements during bad weather, flight crew operations and (TCAS) operation procedures.
February 2012: China has prohibited its airlines from participating in the (EU) Emission Trading Scheme (EU ETS), escalating the row over the new and controversial carbon emissions tax. According to a "Reuters" report, the Chinese government’s State Council issued a statement on its website that said Chinese carriers were prohibited from participating in (EU ETS) without government approval, and they were also barred from using (ETS) as a reason to raise fares.
The Association of Asia-Pacific Airlines (AAPA) Director General, Andrew Herdman told "Reuters" the ruling put Chinese carriers in a difficult position because they have to comply with (EU ETS), or risk large fines, while also being told by their government that they must not comply. “We’re now at the stage that it’s absolutely clear that a whole host of foreign governments are not going to allow the (EU) to do this,” Herdman said.
Chinese carriers are supporting Beijing’s decision to prohibit its airlines from participating in the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS), while still reserving the right to file a lawsuit.
“We are quite supportive of our central government’s decision and we think the real solution should be a global approach through [ICAO],” China Eastern Airlines (MU) Chairman, Liu Shaoyong said. He emphasized that domestic carriers are reserving the right to file a lawsuit against the (EU ETS).
China Air Transport Association (CATA) Director General, Wei Zhenzhong said that “Beijing’s decision reflects Chinese carriers’ wishes and also is quite helpful to protect the real interest of domestic airlines and air travelers.” (CATA) estimates operating expenses of Chinese carriers will increase by +CNY800 million/+$127.2 million annually because of (EU ETS). Air China (BEJ), which operates the most European routes, is expected to see the largest rise in expenses (+CNY200 million). (CEA) is expected to follow at +CNY100 million.
Expenses associated with the (EU ETS) are predicted to keep rising as Chinese carriers open more international routes to Europe to compete with the high speed rail. This year, (BEJ) is scheduled to launch service from Shanghai - Paris and China Southern Airlines (GUN) plans to open a Guangzhou - London route.
Wei said that Beijing’s decision was just the 1st step in the escalating row over the new controversial carbon emissions tax, as Chinese carriers will most likely be suspended from flying to Europe, a consequence of “not joining (EU ETS).” As a result, the Chinese government is considering counter measures against the (EU ETS) with Russia, India, Brazil, and other countries.
May 2012: On May 13, Dragonair (DRG) relaunched services from its base in Hong Kong (HKG) to Taichung (RMQ) in Taiwan. (DRG) previously operated the route until May 2009, and now offers services with 2x-daily frequencies. Competition in the market comes from Mandarin Airlines (MDN) and Hong Kong Express (CRY), which offer 25 and 14 weekly frequencies respectively. (DRG) now flies from Hong Kong International Airport to Jeju in South Korea.
July 2012: Dragonair (DRG) will launch daily, Hong Kong - Haikou A320 service on October 28.
August 2012: Dragonair (DRG) will start 4x-weekly, Hong Kong - Kolkata A320 service on November 2. It will also increase seasonal Chiang Mai service to year-round.
September 2012: Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Company (HAECO) and Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) have formed a joint venture (JV) company (HAECO) (ITEM) Limited (HXITM). The (JV) will provide inventory technical management services to airline customers including (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG). It is 70% owned by (HAECO) and 30% owned by (CAT) and will be managed by (HAECO).
October 2012: Dragonair (DRG) has resumed operations on the route between its Hong Kong (HKG) hub and Haikou (HAK) on Chinese tropical island of Hainan. On October 28, the Cathay Pacific (CAT) subsidiary began operating daily with A320s, competing with Hong Kong Airlines (CRY)’s also daily flights. (DRG) has operated the route in the past, but dropped it in 2008.
November 2012: Dragonair (DRG) inaugurated services to its 2nd Indian destination from Hong Kong (HKG) on November 2. The Cathay Pacific (CAT) subsidiary, which already serves Bangalore with daily flights, now also offers 4x-weekly departures to the capital of the Indian state of West Bengal, Kolkata (CCU). (DRG)’s Tom Wright General Manager S Asia, Middle East & Africa, said: “We are quite confident of the market in India. Sticking to the traffic rights, we will look forward to increase frequency. We will also modify the airplanes to increase capacity.” All flights will be operated with the (DRG)’s fleet of A320s.
January 2013: On the 8th of January, Dragonair (DRG) launched daily services to Zhengzhou (CGO) in north-central China. Competition in this market comes from China Southern Airlines (GUN) which also provides daily frequencies. The following day (DRG) inaugurated flights from Hong Kong to Yangon (RGN), the largest city and main economic hub of Myanmar (Burma). (DRG) (CEO) Patrick Yeung said: “We see tremendous potential in this market with both tourism and commercial activities rapidly gaining momentum. We look forward to carrying more passengers between Hong Kong and Myanmar and helping to promote ties between the 2 places.” The 2,000 km route has not been served since March 2008 and now is operated 4x-weekly with (DRG)’s A320s.
(DRG) which already added flights to the Chinese city of Zhengzhou this year, continued the growth of its Chinese outreach, as it added daily flights to Wenzhou (WNZ) to its offering from Hong Kong (HKG) on 25 January. (DRG)’s (CEO) Patrick Yeung, commented: “(DRG) continues to keep a close eye on China and the Southeast Asian region, two areas of high potential and dynamic traffic flow. With the launch of Wenzhou, (DRG) serves 22 destinations in our core market of Mainland China.” Flights on the 900 km route are operated in competition with China Eastern Airlines (CEA)’s also daily frequencies.
(DRG) will launch 3x-weekly, Hong Kong - Da Nang A320 service on March 28.
Cathay Pacific (CAT) publicly remains steadfast that its business is on track despite growing low cost carrier (LCC) pressure and long-haul competition, all affecting yields, while constraining (CAT) and its Dragonair (DRG) subsidiary in new, lower-cost markets.
The view may be to shore up investor confidence as largest shareholder Swire looks to sell, but beneath the surface, (CAT) is apparently implementing new initiatives to try to keep a hold on the budget-conscious market.
(CAT) has launched "Fanfares," limited-offer and typically last-minute travel deals. More recently, it has offered discounts on business (C) class and premium economy (PY) travel, only to the Hong Kong market, which has long felt "hub captive" as (CAT) commanded a yield premium for non-stop flights.
But these offerings focus on fare cutting and not cost-cutting or structural changes to its business that will enable it to compete more effectively without sacrificing profitability. The pattern occurred in America and Europe before airlines realized their costly operations could not take lower-cost competition head-on. Although a mature airline, on this front (CAT) is seemingly going through adolescence, with some awkward bumps along the way.
March 2013: Air China (BEJ), Cathay Pacific (CAT) and Shanghai International Airport have launched a ground handling service joint venture (JV).
The new venture, which has a registered capital of CNY360 million/$57.3 million, is 41% owned by Shanghai International Airport Company and 10% by the Shanghai Airport Authority. Air China (BEJ) holds a 24% stake and Cathay Pacific (CAT)’s wholly owned subsidiary, Hong Kong Airport Services holds the remaining 25% stake.
Shanghai Airport Authority and Shanghai International Airport Company have transferred their existing airport ground handling services contracts (including for Cathay Pacific (CAT) and its subsidiary Dragonair (DRG)) to the (JV). Air China (BEJ) will transfer ground handling services to the (JV) from April 1.
The new entity provides ground handling services for 30 carriers, comprising 11 domestic carriers and 19 foreign carriers, accounting for one-third of Shanghai Airports’ market share.
Shanghai Airport Authority and Shanghai International Airport Company’s ground handling staff have also been transferred to the new joint venture (JV) company to ensure the continuity of operations at both Pudong and Hongqiao airports.
May 2013: Cathay Pacific Airlines (CAT) will equip its (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) flight attendants with Guestlogix handheld payment devices.
The convergence of China’s domestic high-speed rail (HSR) as well as high-speed rail linking mainland China with Hong Kong could potentially undermine Dragonair (DRG)’s southern China network, a possibility (DRG) is increasingly beginning to consider.
With (HSR) not due to link Hong Kong until 2015, there is time for this scenario to evolve. Any impact to (DRG) and other carriers would have to occur with an alignment of factors. Currently at least, this seems more unlikely than likely: low (HSR) ticket prices, convenient station locations, maximum train speeds and integrated border control.
There is also the possibility Dragonair (DRG) and other carriers could swap routes for others as Hong Kong Airport slots become more scarce.
July 2013: A330-342 (673, B-LAB), ex-(F-WWKZ), Cathay Pacific (CAT) sub-leased.
September 2013: A330-342 (118, B-HLG), ex-(BVR-HLG), delivery.
October 2013: A330-343E (1457, B-HWM), Cathay Pacific (CAT) leased.
November 2013: Dragonair (DRG) will operate 10x-weekly flights between Hong Kong (HKG) and Penang, effective March 30, 2014. Penang will be (DRG)’s 2nd destination in Malaysia and is (DRG)’s 14th destination to have been launched or resumed since April 2012.
(DRG) currently operates daily flights between Hong Kong and Kota Kinabalu. Operated by A330-300s, Penang (PEN) flights will depart Hong Kong daily at 3.10 pm and arrive at 6.50 pm. Daily return flights will depart (PEN) at 7.45 am and arrive at (HKG) at 11.35 am.
In addition to the daily services, extra flights will operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. These additional flights will depart Hong Kong at 8.15 am, arriving at 11.55 am. The return leg will leave (PEN) at 12.55 pm, arriving at (HKG) at 4.45 pm.
Messier-Bugatti-Dowty will provide landing-gear restoration and support services for Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) A330s and A340s. The agreement extends support until 2024.
January 2014: Dragonair (DRG), which has already added flights to the Chinese city of Zhengzhou in the last year, continued the growth of its Chinese outreach, as it added daily flights to Wenzhou (WNZ) to its offering from Hong Kong (HKG) on January 25th. (DRG)’s (CEO) Patrick Yeung, commented: “(DRG) continues to keep a close eye on China and the SE Asian region, 2 areas of high potential and dynamic traffic flow. With the launch of Wenzhou, (DRG) serves 22 destinations in our core market of Mainland China.” Flights on the 900 km route are operated in competition with China Eastern Airlines (CEA)’s also daily frequencies.
Singapore Airlines (SIA), SilkAir (SLK), Cathay Pacific (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) have adopted Abacus electronic miscellaneous document (EMD) technology, creating a new paperless ticketing environment, per (IATA) (ITA)’s mandate that all miscellaneous documents issued from January 2014 to be electronic.
February 2014: Rolls-Royce (RRC) and Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) have agreed to "TotalCare" support for (Trent 700) engines on 60 Airbus A330s in service or on order. The contract will run for as long as (CAT) and sister-company Dragonair (DRG) operate (Trent)-powered A330s.
May 2014: Dragonair (DRG) has joined its sister airline Cathay Pacific Airways in linking Hong Kong (HKG) with Denpasar (DPS) in Bali, Indonesia. On April 27th, (DRG) began 2x-weekly (Thursdays and Sundays) flights using its A330-300s on the 3,440 km route. Apart from Cathay Pacific (CAT) which operates daily flights, passengers are also served by Hong Kong Airlines (CRY) (21x-weekly flights), as well as Garuda Indonesia (GIA) and Tigerair Mandala (MND), who both operate daily flights. Dragonair (DRG) (CEO) Patrick Yeung said at the launch of the route in March: “We are very excited about launching flights to Denpasar and being able to further expand our presence in Asia. We look forward to welcoming passengers on board to experience our award-winning service and products. This new service will provide customers with greater choice and convenience at the same time as bolstering Hong Kong’s position as one of the world’s leading aviation hubs.”
Cathay Pacific (CAT) subsidiary, Dragonair (DRG) has named Algernon Yau as its new (CEO), succeeding Patrick Yeung, who is moving to become Cathay (CAT)’s Group General Manager Taiwan & Korea.
Yau has been heading Cathay Pacific Services, which operates the airline’s cargo terminal at Hong Kong, since mid-2011. He joined Dragonair (DRG) in 1994 having previously worked with Cathay Pacific (CAT), which eventually took over Dragonair (DRG) in 2006.
Cathay Pacific (CAT) has also disclosed a number of senior management changes, with 3 new directors appointed.
Dane Cheng, becomes Director Sales & Marketing, succeeding Rupert Hogg following his move to the Chief Operating Officer (COO) role. (CAT) has also appointed James Ginns as Director Service Delivery, while James Tong becomes Director Corporate Affairs.
December 2014: At 2:50 pm on December 22, Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport (HGH) welcomed its 3 millionth inbound & outbound passenger this year, marking a new milestone for the airport in traffic performance.
The outstanding milestone was reached when passenger Mr Deng Zhijie arrived at (HGH) by Dragonair (DRG) flight KA620 from Hong Kong. To mark the occasion, Hangzhou International Airport Company, Ltd held a grand ceremony in Terminal A. As the lucky passenger, Mr Deng Zhijie was presented with a memorial certificate.
The company President, Shen Jian said it means that (HGH) has become the 4th domestic airport with 3 million of annual international & regional passenger throughput following Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG), Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) and Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport (CAN). And he added, "It is a significant milestone not only for (HGH) but also for Hangzhou civil aviation history."
The airport is expected to handle around 25.55 million passengers by the end of the year, up +15.3% year on year, listing on the second place among domestic airports in terms of passenger traffic growth. The full-year cargo volume is estimated to reach 398,000 tonnes, up +8.2% over a year earlier, with annual airplane movements climbing +12.2% to 214,000. By the end of 2014, the international & regional passenger throughput will amount to 3.08 million, with an increase of +13.7% year on year.
Currently, the airport is connected with 34 international and regional destinations by 33 domestic and foreign airlines, covering 16 countries and regions of the world, and forming an international (regional) route network which radiates E Asia, SE Asia, NE Asia, as well as connecting Europe and Africa. Every week, about 420 international & regional flights depart and land at (HGH).
What's more, (HGH) will open a new non-stop route to Los Angeles or Vancouver in North American next year, with more flights to E Asia and SE Asia, the airport said.
January 2015: Higher leisure traffic offset falling premium demand for Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) in the peak month of December, while the cargo operation continued its upward trajectory.
The Oneworld (ONW) Alliance carrier reported that passenger traffic was “slightly below expectations” in the first half of December, but (CAT) saw a “very strong” Christmas and New Year period and broke daily volume records.
Demand was high on leisure routes from Hong Kong to N Asia and SE Asia, and the Australia/New Zealand market was also strong. However, a fall-off in premium demand put pressure on yields.
Combined passenger traffic on (CAT) and its Dragonair (DRG) subsidiary was up +7.5% on a +5.9% capacity gain in December, resulting in load factor rising +1.1 points to 83.5% LF.
On the cargo side, demand “remained robust” until the beginning of the Christmas holidays, then fell off as expected. The cargo market began to pick up again in the 2nd week of January, (CAT) said.
March 2015: News Item A-1: Hong Kong flag carrier, the Cathay Pacific Group posted a full-year result of +HK$3.15 billion/+$406 million in net profits for 2014, up +20.2% year-over-year (YOY) over the Hong Kong-based company’s net take of +HK$2.6 billion in 2013.
Acknowledging a difficult 1st half of 2014 (in which the Group was affected by high fuel prices, lower passenger yield, ongoing weakness and overcapacity in its air cargo market) Cathay (CAT)’s business rebounded in the 2nd half. The Group’s full-year cargo revenue was HK$25.4 billion, a +7.3% (YOY) increase from 2013.
“After a prolonged period of weakness, cargo demand started to improve in the summer of 2014 and was strong in the fourth quarter, [our] peak period for cargo,” Cathay Pacific Group Chairman, John Slosar said. “The sharp reduction in fuel prices in the 4th quarter caused a very welcome net benefit to overall profits. However, it resulted in losses on our hedging contracts [and] significant unrealized hedging losses.”
The Group’s consolidated full-year revenue was HK$105.99 billion, up +5.5% (YOY). Passenger revenue was HK$75.73 billion, up +5.4% (YOY). Consolidated operating expenses for the year were HK$101.56 billion, up +5% (YOY); the Group’s full-year operating profit came in at +HK$4.44 billion, up +18% (YOY).
Consolidated passenger yield for Cathay Pacific (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) was down -1.8% (YOY) to 67.3 HK cents; cargo and mail yield was down -5.6% (YOY) to HK$2.19. Fuel expenses, net of hedging, were up +5.7% (YOY) to HK$40.3 billion.
Cathay Pacific (CAT) and Dragonair (DRG) carried 31.6 million passengers in 2014, up +5.5% (YOY). Traffic increased +15% (YOY) to 120.3 billion (RPK)s; overall capacity grew +5.9% (YOY) to 134.71 billion (ASK)s; (CAT)’s combined passenger load factor came to 83.3% LF, up +1.1 point (YOY).
June 2015: News Item A-1: China’s Airlines Reroute Flights, Refund Tickets to South Korea after Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), Alert" by (ATW) Jeremy Torr, June 10, 2015.
Following a Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) Red Alert warning by the Hong Kong government, warning travelers against flying to Korea, Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) and its subsidiary, Dragonair (DRG) have committed to refunds or re-routing for all existing tickets to Seoul, Busan and Jeju up to the end of August.
In addition, Taiwan-based China Airlines (CHI), (EVA) Air, TransAsia Airways (FSH), and Mandarin Airways (MDN) are also offering full-refund cancellations in the immediate term for Korean flights.
Korea has reported 95 cases of (MERS), with 7 deaths in the country. As a result, the Hong Kong Security Bureau issued an Outbound Travel Alert (OTA), advising passengers to avoid “all non-essential travel” to the country.
In addition, Taiwan and Macau have both advised against unnecessary travel to any destination in South Korea, and are mandating that passengers wear facemasks disembarking from Korea-originating flights.
Since the virus was discovered in 2012 in Saudi Arabia, the (MERS) outbreak has killed >300 people in >20 countries. 1st identified in Saudi Arabia where it claimed the lives of >100, (MERS) is suspected of being spread by respiratory and direct contact vectors.
Cathay Pacific (CAT) and (DRG) say they are “monitoring the situation closely” and have provided extra facemasks, hand sanitizers and gloves for use on any airplanes traveling to Korea. Both carriers are looking at extra sanitation procedures in addition to routine cleaning on airplanes flying to potential infection areas.
Authorities in South Korea temporarily closed two hospitals amid persistent fears about the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) outbreak, which had killed 14 people through June 13th. 12 new infections also were reported, the Health Ministry said. Nearly 140 people in the nation have been diagnosed with (MERS) since the country reported its first case last month.
August 2015: Dragonair (DRG) has resumed flights after >12 years between Hong Kong (HKG) and Hiroshima (HIJ). On August 16 (DRG), the regional subsidiary of Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) began 2x-weekly flights (Thursdays and Sundays) on the 2,290 km route using its A321s. No other carrier serves this route with non-stop flights. This becomes Dragonair (DRG)’s 4th route to Japan, as it already serves Fukuoka, Okinawa, and Tokyo Haneda. Between them, (DRG) and (CAT) now operate a total of 152 flights per week between Hong Kong and eight destinations in Japan.
January 2016: Hong Kong-based Dragonair (DRG) is being renamed Cathay Dragon in an effort to align itself more closely with parent Cathay Pacific (CAT). Its aircraft will be repainted with a livery design similar to (CAT)’s. However, the 2 airlines will continue to be operated separately under their own licenses.
Dragonair (DRG) has been a wholly owned subsidiary of (CAT) since 2006, and operates a fleet of 42 Airbus A330 and A320-family aircraft. The 1st aircraft to be rebranded will be an A330, scheduled for April. The design will be introduced to the rest of the fleet progressively “in accordance with the regular painting schedule.”
(DRG) said the new livery will feature a deeper shade of red than the current Dragonair (DRG) colors. It will use the familiar (CAT) “brushwing” on the tail, and the current Dragonair (DRG) dragon logo will be used on the aircraft nose.
Cathay Pacific (CAT) revealed an updated livery of its own in November, with a Boeing 777-300ER the 1st airplane to feature the new look. These changes include modification to the brushwing, and a simplified color range of green, gray, and white.
August 2016: Dragonair (DRG) will take over Cathay Pacific (CAT)’s 4 daily Hong Kong – Kuala Lumpur flights progressively in March – May 2017. 5 Airbus A330s will be switched to (DRG) to support these services. Kuala Lumpur will be (DRG)’s 3rd destination in Malaysia, after Penang and Kota Kinabalu.
March 2016: Cathay Dragon (DRG), the new name for Dragonair (DRG), has launched 2x-daily service between Hong Kong (HKG) and Kuala Lumpur (KUL). The new service, which launched on March 1, will be flown by (DRG)’s A330-300s. The 2,541 km sector is already flown by AirAsia (ASW) (4x-daily), Malaysia Airlines (MAS) (3x-daily), Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) (13x-weekly) and Malindo Air (daily). Cathay Dragon (DRG) is, in effect, replacing Cathay Pacific (CAT) on the route, though its services continue until the end of April. This becomes (DRG)’s 3rd route to Malaysia as it already serves Penang with 11x-weekly flights and Kota Kinabalu with 5x-. Speaking at the launch, Anna Choi, Cathay Pacific (CAT)’s Country Manager for Malaysia & Brunei, said: “The Cathay Pacific Group of airlines, which includes Cathay Dragon (DRG), remains committed to grow in the Malaysian market, and will continue to provide the same high level of product and service to our customers travelling between Malaysia, Hong Kong and beyond, to our network of international destinations world wide.”
February 2017: 2 A330-343E (1545, B-LBF; 1557, B-LBG), (CAT) leased, ex-(F-WWCV & F-WWYL).
May 2017: Cathay Pacific (CAT), reports the "South China Morning Post", will decide by this summer on an order for as many as 32 narrow bodies, either A320neos or 737-MAXs destined for (CAT)’s Cathay Dragon
Hong Kong, remember, plans to open a new airport runway in 2024.
July 2017: News Item A-1: Although Cathay Pacific (CAT) subsidiary Cathay Dragon (DRG) has gained expanded permission to fly routes to the USA, (DRG) said it does not intend to launch flights there in the short term. “There are no immediate plans for Cathay Dragon (DRG) to operate flights to the USA,” a (CAT) spokeswoman said.
(DRG) applied for USA Department of Transportation (DOT) exemption in January, which would give it broader authority to operate from Hong Kong to the USA.
News Item A-2: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) has launched its 2nd new route of 2017, having launched Tel Aviv services in March, with the commencement on July 2 of a 4x-weekly service from Hong Kong (HKG) to Barcelona (BCN). The 10,054 km route will be operated during the summer period by (CAT)’s A350-900s and complements the existing 4x-weekly service to Madrid which began last June. No other carrier operates the route and Barcelona becomes (CAT)’s 12th destination in Europe, which includes 3 in the UK, 2 each in Germany and Italy and 1 each in France, the Netherlands and Switzerland, respectively. Ivan Chu (CEO) (CAT) said: “Barcelona is a great city for its tourism and rich culture that attracts visitors from around the world. We’re excited to offer the 1st-ever direct link between Hong Kong and Barcelona, which follows the launch of our Madrid service last year. This new summer service reflects our commitment to grow the (CAT) network and offer customers more choice. This further strengthens Hong Kong’s status as 1 of the world’s most important aviation hubs.” (CAT)’s (RPK)s to Europe are up +14% in the 1st 5 months of 2017 while overall (RPK)s are up just +1.5%.
September 2017: Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) has finalized an order with Airbus for 32 A321neo single-aisle aircraft. The aircraft will be operated by Cathay Dragon (DRG), the group’s regional carrier, on services linking its Hong Kong home base with destinations across Asia.
October 2017: News Item A-1: The Hong Kong-based Cathay Pacific Group has chosen the (CFM) International (LEAP-1A) engine to power the fleet of 32 Airbus A321neos it has on order. The Pratt & Whitney (PRW) (PW1200G) geared turbofan (GTF) engine is also an option for the A321neo. (CFM), a joint venture between (GE) Aviation and Safran Aircraft Engines, valued the engine order at $1 billion based on list prices.
The A321neos will be operated by Cathay (CAT) regional carrier Cathay Dragon (DRG). The engine order includes a long-term maintenance agreement under which (CFM) will guarantee maintenance costs on a dollar per engine flight hour basis.
News Item A-2: News Item A-9: A number of airlines operating to the USA have indicated they will be implementing new security measures this month for USA-bound flights.
USA Transportation Security Administration (TSA) spokesperson Mike England said the measures are part of the continuing implementation of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) mandate, issued in June, requiring 180 airlines operating to the USA to enhance security. The measures are part of (DHS) and (TSA) “efforts to raise the global aviation security baseline,” he explained, adding, “The security measures affect all individuals (international passengers and USA citizens—traveling to the USA from a last point of departure international location.”
The (TSA) is not specifically detailing the newest measures being put in place. Based on airline statements, it appears the measures being added involve airlines asking questions to USA-bound passengers.
Cathay Pacific (CAT), for example, said passengers flying on nonstop flights to the USA will not be able to do remote drops of checked bags as of October 26 and will be required to “check in their baggage at the dedicated counters at Hong Kong International Airport, where they will be subject to a short security interview.”
(CAT) added, “Passengers without check-in baggage should proceed to the boarding gate directly as early as possible, where they will also be subject to a short security interview. We therefore advise all passengers traveling to the USA to arrive at the airport 3 hours prior to departure to ensure they can proceed through all airport checkpoints in good time.”
Germany’s Lufthansa (DLH) and Dubai-based Emirates Airline (EAD) have also said passenger interviews for USA-bound flights will be initiated this week.
After instituting a ban in March on passengers flying nonstop to the USA from 10 airports in the Middle East and Africa from carrying personal electronic devices (PEDs) larger than a smartphone aboard aircraft, the (DHS) contemplated a wider “laptop ban.” But after discussions with other governments and warnings from airlines about the implications of such a ban (including fire safety concerns related to (PED)s in checked baggage), the (DHS) instead implemented enhanced security requirements in late June for 180 airlines flying to the USA from 280 world airports. The (DHS) removed all (PED) restrictions in July, saying airlines flying to the USA had “successfully implemented the 1st phase of enhanced security measures.”
“As we move forward, the (TSA) will continue to work closely with our aviation partners and verify that all security enhancements are accurately implemented,” England said. “As threats continue to evolve, we and our partners around the world will continue to work together to improve intelligence sharing and standardize best practices, while also pursuing technological advancements that will make flying more secure for everyone.”
February 2018: News Item A-1: "Discover the World" and Cathay Pacific Airways (CAT) launched their new sales and marketing representation in Ecuador. This marks the 14th country in Latin America where "Discover the World" represents (CAT) and its regional subsidiary, Cathay Dragon (DRG).
News Item A-2: "Cathay Dragon to Launch New Service to Jinan in March"
by China Aviation Daily, February 11, 2018.
The Cathay Pacific Group's expansion across mainland China continues apace, with the announcement that Cathay Dragon (DRG) will commence a new 4x-weekly service between Hong Kong and Jinan, the capital of Shandong province from March 26, 2018.
A historic and picturesque home to >7 million residents, Jinan is 1 of E China's major administrative, economic and transportation centers. It has also become a popular tourism destination and is revered for the 72 natural artesian springs in the area.
The new service, which will complement the airline's existing flights to Qingdao, will be operated by (DRG)'s fleet of Airbus A320 aircraft in a 2-class configuration.
In addition to connecting passengers from around the world into Jinan, the new flight will offer passengers from Shandong more options when transferring to Cathay Pacific (CAT)'s international network of >200 destinations which are served from Hong Kong.
Cathay Pacific (CAT) Chief Customer & Commercial Officer Paul Loo said: "Our priority is to grow our reach to new destinations, which is why we are delighted to soon be adding Jinan to our network. Shandong province is a flourishing region, 1 that is becoming ever more popular with travellers from around Asia and beyond. By flying to the province's eastern and western gateways, we are providing our customers with greater convenience and better choice.
"Furthermore, by establishing new routes, we help strengthen Hong Kong's status as Asia's largest international aviation hub."
The announcement follows the early January launch of (DRG)'s services to Nanning in Guangxi and Cathay Pacific's upcoming services to Brussels, Copenhagen, Dublin and Washington DC.
The flight schedule for the Hong Kong (HKG) to Jinan (TNA) service from March 26, 2018 is as follows:
Flight No - From - To - Departure/Arrival - Days of Operation
KA 960 - HKG - TNA - 1955 / 2315 - Mon, Tue, Thurs, Sat
KA 961 - TNA - HKG - 0815 / 1130 - Tue, Wed, Fri, Sun
May 2018: "Hong Kong Hub Strengthens with New Cathay Pacific Group Services to Davao City, Philippines and Medan, Sumatra, Indonesia" by "China Aviation Daily" April 30, 2018.
The Cathay Pacific Group's network continues to grow from strength to strength with regional airline Cathay Dragon (DRG) introducing 2 new services, to Davao City and Medan, from October 28 to 29, respectively. The cities are the 8th and 9th new destinations the group has announced during an unprecedented year of expansion and will boost Hong Kong's connections with 2 of (ASEAN)'s founding member states.
Davao City, the main trade, business and tourism centre of the island of Mindanao in the southern Philippines, will be served 4x-weekly; while Medan, the thriving capital of North Sumatra in Indonesia, will be served 3x-weekly.
The new routes, the only non-stop flights between Hong Kong and Davao City, and Hong Kong and Medan, will both be operated by Airbus A320s.
Cathay Pacific (CAT) Chief Customer & Commercial Officer Paul Loo said the new services reflect the group's commitment to growing its reach to destinations not otherwise served directly from Hong Kong, providing customers with more choice and strengthening Hong Kong's status as Asia's largest international aviation hub.
"Davao City and Medan are key trade and tourism centres in their respective regions and each looks set play an important role in the "Belt & Road" Initiative. As such, both present exciting opportunities for business and leisure travellers alike," he said.
"Our convenient new services will capture the demand from Hong Kong and beyond, while at the same time providing customers in the Philippines and Indonesia with more options when connecting to the Cathay Pacific Group's extensive Mainland China and international networks." Already this year, the Cathay Pacific Group has launched services to Nanning, Jinan, and Brussels. Other new routes to take-off in 2018 include Dublin (June) and Washington (September), as well as seasonal services to Copenhagen (May) and Cape Town (November).
* Destination Davao
Home to the largest Chinatown in the Philippine archipelago, Davao City is Mindanao's economic capital and the gateway to its flourishing agricultural heartland.
With a cosmopolitan population of >1.5 million, Davao City is also increasingly becoming known as a focal point for ecotourism, thanks to its natural environment, unspoiled beaches and islands and proximity to world-class diving sites around the Davao Gulf.
The new route will complement the Cathay Pacific Group's existing 3 services to Manila, Cebu and Clark in the Philippines.
* Multicultural Medan
The largest city in Indonesia outside of Java, Medan is known for its diversity which is reflected in its rich cultural heritage, historic architecture and, most famously, its wide variety of cuisine. Indeed, Medan is considered Indonesia's culinary capital, boasting a vast array of restaurants serving Batak, Chinese, Indian, Malay and Tamil-inspired dishes. The city, Sumatra's key transport hub, is located within easy reach of some of the region's best-known natural wonders, including Lake Toba, Samosir Island and Mount Sinabung.
Medan will be the 4th Indonesian destination served by the Cathay Pacific Group, following Jakarta, Denpasar (Bali), and Surabaya.
Contributed by Cathay Pacific
Click below for photos:
DRG-A320 - 2017-06.jpg
DRG-AIRBUS-SHORT AND LONG HAUL
0 747-200F, (TLS) WET-LEASED, RETURNED 2001-12. FREIGHTER.
1 747-209F (SCD) (JT9D-7R4G2) (752-24308, /89 B-KAD), 2003-12 & 2004-05. FREIGHTER.
0 747-3H6 (JT9D-7R4G2) (650-23600, /86 B-KAC), EX-(MAS), CONVERTED TO FREIGHTER BY (TAECO). WFU 2008-08. FREIGHTER.
2 747-312SF (JT9D-7R4G2) (637-23409, /86 B-KAA; 666-23769, /87 B-KAB), EX-(SIA), (SIA) SUPPORT, CONVERTED TO FREIGHTER BY (TAECO). FREIGHTER.
5 747-412BCF (PW4056) (9V-SMJ; 953-27067, B-KAG, 2007-09; 27217, B-KAI, 2007-12), BOUGHT FROM (SQC) CONVERTED TO FREIGHTER BY (SIAECO). 25068; WFU TO VICTORVILLE 2009-01. FREIGHTER.
0 L-1011-385-1 TRISTAR (RB211-22B) (1094, /74 VR-HMW), (CAT) LEASED, INCLUDING 1 FOR $5 MILLION, EX-(BAB) FROM STORAGE IN MOJAVE DESERT. RTND. LEASED TO (AIJ).
1 A300B4-203F (CF6-50C2) (157, /81 N371PC), (TCN) WET-LEASED 2004-06. FREIGHTER.
0 A300B4-203F (CF6-50C2) (203, N473AS), RETURNED (TCN) 2006-08. FREIGHTER.
0 A300B4-203F (CF6-50C2) (218, N373PC), (TCN) WET-LEASED 2006-08. RETURNED 2006-12. FREIGHTER.
0 A320-214 (V2527-A5) (4021), (TCI) LEASED. RETURNED.
1 A320-231 (414, VR-HYR).
6 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (756, /98 B-HSD; 784, /98 B-HSE; 812, /98 B-HSG;
816, /98 B-HSF; 877, /98 B-HSH; 930, /98 B-HSI), (ILF) LSD, 8C, 150Y.
10 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (1253, /00 B-HSJ; 2229, /04 B-HSL; 2238, /04 B-HSM; 2428, /05 B-HSN; 4023, /09B-HSO; 4247, /10 B-HSP; 5024, /12 B-HSQ; 5030, /12 B-HSR; 5362, /12 B-HSS; 5429, /12 H-BSU), 812 2 YEARS LEASED SOLD TO (FSH) 1999-08, RETURNED 2003-01; 2 LEASED TO (PCH). 8C, 150Y.
1 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (1721, /02 B-HSK), (BOU) LEASED 2002-03. 8C, 150Y.
4 A321-231 (V2533-A5) (633, /96 B-HTF; 993, /99 B-HTD; 1024, /99 B-HTE; 1695, /02 B-HTG), (ILF) LEASED, 24C, 148Y.
2 A321-231 (V2533-A5) (1984, /03 B-HTH; 2021, /03 B-HTI), 24C, 148Y.
32 ORDERS A321neo (LEAP-1A):
9 A330-342 (TRENT 772-60) (012, /92 B-HLJ; 017, /92 B-HLK; 071, /94 B-HLA; 083, B-HLB; 098, /95 B-HYA; 099, /95 B-HLC; 106, /95 B-HYB; 109, /95 B-HLE, 2010-08; 111, B-HYC; 118, B-HLG; 132, /96 B-HYD; 177, /97 B-HYE; 234, /98 B-HYF; 244, /98 B-HLL; 662, /05 B-HWG; 673, B-LAB, 2013-07), (ILF) LEASED. 111; 177; RETURNED TO LESSOR IN 1999-10, LEASED TO (AIJ). 098; RETURNED & LEASED TO (ONU) 2010-06. 106; RETURNED. 44C, 267Y.
5 A330-343X (TRENT 772B-60) (405, /01 B-HYG; 407 /01 B-HYH; 479, /02 B-HYI; 512, /02 B-HYJ; 581, /04 B-HYQ, 2004-03), 18F, 42C, 230Y.
6 A330-343X (TRENT 772B-60) (654, /05 B-HWF; 662, /05 B-HWG "HONG KONG;" 692, /05 B-HWH; 716, /06 B-HWI; 741, /06 B-HWJ; 786, /06 B-HWK), (ILF) 10 YEAR LEASED. 30C, 270Y.
1 A330-343E (1457, B-HWM; 1545, B-LBF; 1557, B-LBG), (CAT) LEASED 2013-10, 2017-02, EX-(F-WWCV & F-WWYL).
A330 - The below website shows assembly and then complex painting of a red dragon on its fuselage sides:
Click below for photos:
JOHN SLOSAR, CHAIRMAN (DRG) & CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (CAT) (2011-03).
ALGERNON YAU, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (CEO) (DRG) (2014-05).
Algernon has been heading Cathay Pacific Services, which operates the airline’s cargo terminal at Hong Kong, since mid-2011. He joined Dragonair (DRG) in 1994 having previously worked with Cathay Pacific (CAT), which eventually took over Dragonair (DRG) in 2006.
PATRICK YEUNG, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (DRG) (2011-08), MOVED TO NEW POSITION AS CATHAY'S (CAT) NEW GROUP GENERAL MANAGER FOR TAIWAN & KOREA (2014-05).
ANDY TUNG, CHIEF OPERATIONS OFFICER (COO) (2004-03).
FRANCIS WEI, CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER (CFO).
PAUL LOO, CHIEF CUSTOMER & COMMERCIAL OFFICER (CCO).
DR KWOK CHAN, HEAD CORPORATE SAFETY & QUALITY.
CAPTAIN TIMOTHY WATTS, GENERAL MANAGER FLIGHT OPERATIONS.
CAPTAIN ANDY KUMARA, MANAGER FLIGHT OPERATIONS (HKGONKA)
CAPTAIN ALEX DAWSON, MANAGER FLIGHT SAFETY (HKGOQKA)
MS OLIVIA LIN, GENERAL MANAGER PLANNING & INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS.
JAMES YEUNG, GENERAL MANAGER COMMERCIAL.
SINGMAY CHOU, GENERAL MANAGER MARKETING.
FELIX HART, GENERAL MANAGER FLIGHT TRAINING CENTER.
TERRY LO, GENERAL MANAGER INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY (IT) MANAGEMENT.
ALBERT YAU, GENERAL MANAGER CARGO.
TITUS DIU, GENERAL MANAGER HONG KONG & SOUTHERN CHINA.
TOM WRIGHT, GENERAL MANAGER, SOUTH ASIA, MIDDLE EAST & AFRICA.
MS CHRISTINE CHAN, GENERAL MANAGER HUMAN RESOURCES (HR).
P EVANS, MANAGER ENGINEERING.
WARREN CHIM, MANAGER QUALITY ASSURANCE (QA).