Guangzhou : New global aviation hub in China

Guangzhou/China – The 24th World Route Development Forum will kick off in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou on September 15th. Themed with “Gathering Guangzhou to Connect the World”, the international civil aviation community’s “Olympics” and “World Expo” this time looks forward to better cooperation and greater progress in the international aviation industry with a leading force in the field. Recently, a range of preview events launched in London and Frankfurt by the Guangzhou government has drawn great attention from leading British and German aviation figures and from other leaders of companies in the industry. The city is now transforming from one of China’s most important aviation hubs into a world-class one as it continues to improve its functions to meet the global standards.

As an important gateway of southern China, Guangzhou represents an international transport hub city. Guangzhou is hopeful that air routes will help achieve win-win progress through global cooperation, said Chen Zhiying, Executive Vice Mayor of Guangzhou. In doing so, he continued, we can increase connectivity and have industry resources clustered around, which further fuels the urban economic growth across the globe.

According to Steven Small, brand director of the World Route Development Forum in British UBM Group, there have been more than 200 global airlines companies signing up for the grand event. “I’m convinced that the feast held in Guangzhou will be the grandest and most successful one on record. It will kick off the celebrations of the global civil aviation community and serve as a perfect opportunity for Guangzhou to showcase its business strength,” said Mr. Small.

From the analysis made by Christopher Choa, executive director of AECOM‘s urban development practice, a hub airport is the economic engine of urban development. The reason behind a dynamic and vibrant Guangzhou is that it owns such advanced urban infrastructure as the airport.

“For years, I have witnessed how Guangzhou has forged and promoted a friendly relationship with Frankfurt. I’ve seen the city taking off,” noted Eduard Hechler, the director of the foreign affairs office in Frankfurt, “Each time I pay a visit to Guangzhou, the city will always amazes me. Having experienced major changes these years, it turns more trendy and enchanting. Given the city’s well-developed airport and as China Southern Airlines launches a new air route to Frankfurt, it seems that the two cities have become much closer.”

The advantage of Guangzhou being an aviation hub is increasingly clear. For now, the Baiyun International Airport has opened over 300 air routes, 157 of which are international, and offered flights to 220 destinations across the world. As of July 2018, there are 8 destinations in America, 11 in Europe, 5 in Africa, 8 in Oceania and 54 in Asia (including Hong Kong and Taiwan), which covers major aviation hub cities in Europe and America. The Baiyun Airport has asserted its dominance over other gateway hubs in Southeast Asia and Oceania in recent years. Simultaneously, a more intertwined global air network is in the making, giving priority to linking destinations in Asia-Pacific, Oceania and Africa while making steady progress on those in Europe and America.

At the same time, the airport economy has also become a vital pillar for Guangzhou’s economic boom. It is learned that the Guangzhou Airport Economic Zone is home to 11,728 enterprises, which fall into the category of five airport-related industries, namely aircraft maintenance and conversion, logistics, cross-border e-commerce, aviation headquarters and aircraft leasing. As one of the 12 national-level airport economic demonstration zones, the Guangzhou international aviation hub is expected to develop into a national pioneering innovator in this field.

“As world’s second largest aviation market, China is still expanding its share. It is expected to be the world’s busiest market of air transportation by 2034. Guangzhou is playing an integral part of the market, be it at home or abroad,” said Katie Bland, who’s in charge of operating the World Route Development Forum.