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 this week at ABACE 2014 by Avinode. Quote requests for flights to and from China, Hong Kong and Taiwan grew from 9,701 in 2011 to 11,684 in 2012 (up around 20.5 percent), and to 14,369 last year (up around 23 percent).
South China Sea
Private aviation support provider Universal Weather & Aviation has augmented its network in Asia with a Hong Kong trip support office, now open 24/7 to meet growing demand in the region. Universal has assembled a team with local and cultural knowledge to assist its customers. According to the company, which has operated in the region for more than three decades, its Asia-based clients are using their aircraft more and taking more trips outside the region.
The civil aviation authorities for mainland China, Macau, Canada and the Cayman Islands have accepted Hongkong Jet as an approved aircraft maintenance organization. They follow recognition by the Hong Kong Civil Aviation Department. “With the strong growth in business aviation in mainland China and customers’ increasing level of sophistication, more customers on the mainland are requesting maintenance services to international standards as they travel to Hong Kong and beyond,” said Chris Buchholz, CEO of Hongkong Jet.
Aerochine Aviation (Booth P702), the independent representative for Bell Helicopter in China, Hong Kong and Macau since 2009, reports that last year was a banner one for the company’s sales in China.
Aviation maintenance management software developer Mxi Technologies is opening an office in Hong Kong and has named Witono Lukman as managing director. The company cites a growing demand for its Maintenix software throughout the Asia-Pacific region as the reason behind its decision to open the new office.
Hong Kong’s ASA Group–which offers business aviation/VIP security, ground handling and concierge services in Asia–said it has recently seen increased business aircraft traffic to the region. While he didn’t provide hard numbers, ASA CEO Simon Wagstaff said, “There is a roughly fifty-fifty split between business and pleasure flights, and we are pleased to see that this upturn has lasted for several weeks now with no sign of abating.”
Despite the beginning of the Chinese New Year, Valentine’s Day, the close timeframe to this week’s Singapore Air Show and record low temperatures, the third Asian Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition (ABACE), held last Thursday in Hong Kong, drew 1,131 people, 29 exhibitors and 14 aircraft on static display, say the organizers.
Gulfstream Aerospace has added a second field service representative (FSR) in Hong Kong and a second FSR in Singapore to support its growing Asia-Pacific fleet. It has also positioned a specialized PlaneView cockpit technician in Hong Kong as well as a maintenance technician Metro Jet’s Hong Kong facility to assist transient operators.