As part of an effort to provide support for airlines, Hong Kong's airport is offering to fund tickets for the city's home-based airline.

According to a a press release from the Hong Kong Airport Authority, the airport authority will purchase 500,000 airline tickets from Cathay Pacific, Cathay Dragon, HK Express, and Hong Kong Airlines as part of the HKD $2 billion (USD $258 million) relief package.

The airport will give away the tickets to residents and foreign visitors as part of a recovery campaign for a later date.

Along with the purchase of airline tickets, the airport will support aviation support service operators through the purchase of their equipment. The AA will buy the GSE from operators in cash and pay upfront, with the aim of helping to improve the cash flow of operators. Operators will also enjoy a rent free period for using the equipment after the sales. Operators providing services in ramp handling, maintenance, catering and into-plane fuel, etc, may participate in the scheme on a voluntary basis.

In a statement, a spokesperson for the airport stated: “During this difficult time, the AA has been trying its best to support business partners. As an integral part of the aviation industry, the AA is also facing a significant shortfall in revenue because of the traffic plummet. The AA will go to the financial market in the next two months to raise the necessary funds, in order to maintain its own liquidity for funding the airport operation and the committed capital projects. The loan will also be used to finance the new relief package.”

The airport and the city of Hong Kong has seen continued struggles from the pro-democracy protests that started in the summer of 2019.

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