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December 3, 2019

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Changes in rules boost air cargo at Pudong

The volume of cargo going through Pudong International Airport has been rebounding since October with more flexible flight schedules and better services for carriers and cross-border e-commerce.

Figures had been tumbling since September 2018 due to the China-US trade dispute and other unfavorable factors.

Freight turnover dropped by 6.77 percent year on year in August. The biggest monthly fall in the past 12 months was 17.5 percent, Shanghai Airport Authority said.

With the support of China’s civil aviation regulator, Shanghai customs and airlines, cargo turnover at the airport was 328,200 tons in October, a 2.31 percent increase on the year.

To curb the decline, the authority visited over 20 carriers and logistics firms operating at the airport and encouraged them to increase their capacity.

Eastern Air Logistics of Shanghai-based China Eastern Airlines, for instance, has rerouted cargo flights from other airports to Pudong. Ethiopian Airlines opened a new cargo flight between Shanghai and Addis Ababa which helped increase freight turnover from Africa.

China Southern and Azerbaijan Airlines offered discounts to boost cargo volume, while logistics giants from both home and abroad, such as DHL, UPS, SF Express and EMS, also used the Pudong airport as a distribution center.

Supported by the Civil Aviation Administration of China, the airport authority also improved the application procedure of cargo flight schedules for carriers.

To tap the demand of rising cross-border e-commerce, the authority set up a specialized cargo supervision and inspection platform at the cargo terminal at Pudong to improve efficiency.

The project is expected to benefit the cross-border e-commerce for the Yangtze River Delta region.

The airport also replaced traditional documents with electronic forms. Over 65 percent of documents have been electronic since July. It also opened China’s first dust-free inspection site for precision instruments and other high-tech equipment.

Takeoff, landing and berthing fees at the airport have also been reduced.

In the next step, the airport will sign agreements with Silk Way West Airlines in Azerbaijan and the Russian Sky Gates Airlines to increase their freight turnover at Pudong.


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