Requests for charter flight price quotes, a bellwether of business aviation activity, have been growing in China by more than 20 percent annually over the past three years, according to data released on the eve of ABACE 2014 by Avinode (Booth H430).
Beijing Capital International Airport
Gulfstream Aerospace’s substantial investment in establishing China’s first factory-owned service center for business aircraft appears to be paying off as the U.S. airframer prepares to add support capability for its latest G650 and G280 models later this year.
Narita International Airport (Booth 610), Japan’s major international hub, opened its Premier Gate business aviation terminal in March 2012, the first in the Tokyo area.
Gulfstream Aerospace recently marked the first anniversary of its 82,000-sq-ft Beijing service center at Beijing Capital International Airport. It is the only business-jet manufacturer to offer factory service in China.
“It has been a successful first year for Gulfstream Beijing,” said Mark Burns, president of product support. “We have experienced steady growth and have expanded our capabilities. As the Gulfstream fleet continues to grow in the Asia-Pacific region, we’ll look for ways to enhance and add to the services we provide at Gulfstream Beijing.”
To boost aftermarket service for operators of its business aircraft in China, Bombardier Aerospace has signed an agreement with Beijing Airlines that will allow the latter to provide technical support for all of the Canadian OEM’s business aircraft based at and visiting Beijing Capital International Airport. “Bombardier has long-standing and valued relationships in China and we are steadily increasing our customer support in strategic locations across the country,” said Éric Martel, Bombardier president of customer services and specialized and amphibious aircraft.
Bombardier Aerospace boosted the aftermarket support network for operators of its business aircraft in China by announcing a new service agreement with Beijing Airlines, one of mainland China’s top business aviation operators. Under this agreement, Beijing Airlines, originally established in 2003 as China Business Jet, will provide technical support for all Learjets, Challengers and Globals at its Beijing Capital International Airport facilities.
Congestion at China’s three major international airports–Beijing Capital, Shanghai Pudong and Guangzhou Baiyun–has quashed Xiamen Airlines’ plans to offer long-haul nonstop flights from the People’s Republic using Boeing 787s starting next August. Increasing demand for slots from foreign airlines and China’s four big carriers to operate point-to-point services from the three big airports leaves smaller carriers such as Xiamen no choice but to look at other Chinese cities as ports of entry into China.
China’s Air Traffic Management Bureau and Airbus’s air traffic management (ATM) company, ProSky, have signed an agreement to work together to modernize that country’s ATM system. The projects include updating the ILS systems at Beijing Capital Airport (ZBAA), conducting a capacity assessment at Chengdu International Airport (ZUUU) and other technology-based ATM improvements.
In January, Beijing Capital Helicopter took delivery of its first Eurocopter EC135P2+ in executive livery, and the company is using it for a regular charter operation from the capital to Buddhist spiritual sites.
The charter was especially active during the Chinese Lunar New Year holidays, ferrying passengers to the Wutaishan Mountain area, a well known site of Buddhist temples and monasteries about 160 nm from Beijing Badaling Airport. The Buddhist spiritual center is about a seven-hour journey by train from Beijing. The flight by helicopter is as little as an hour-and-a-half.
Lyon Bron Airport (Stand 1164), which serves France’s second most populous urban area, is back in traffic-growth mode. After reporting a 6.1-percent drop in traffic last year, to around 6,300 movements, it has recorded 2 percent more aircraft movements for the January to April 2012 period.
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