HONG KONG EXPRESS TO OPERATE FOUR EMBRAER 170S
Embraer announced today that startup airline Hong Kong Express Airways Ltd (HKE) will operate four EMBRAER 170 aircraft configured with 76 seats. HKE will be the launch customer for the EMBRAER 170, not only in China but also in the whole of Asia.
Three aircraft are scheduled for delivery to HKE in the second half of 2005 and one in the first half of 2006. These aircraft will be leased from General Electric Capital Aviation Services (GECAS).
HKE Chief Executive Officer Andrew Tse said: “The aircraft will be used to provide multiple daily services between Hong Kong and secondary cities in mainland China. In conjunction with the extensive air services to over 140 cities worldwide through the Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA), HKE’s plan of operation will strengthen HKIA’s position of being the predominant gateway to mainland China by enhancing the connectivity for mainland China international travelers as well as the air service for local Hong Kong travelers. This is an investment of over US$ 100 million, which fully demonstrates our commitment to Hong Kong.”
The lease of the four EMBRAER 170 aircraft is just the first phase of HKE’s fleet plan. It is HKE’s intention to acquire two aircraft per year to cover 12-15 cities in mainland China in the next five years, subject to the regulatory approval and market conditions.
“Embraer is very proud and pleased that Hong Kong Express became our launch customer in Asia for the EMBRAER 170. By providing air services between Hong Kong and secondary cities in mainland China, it will no doubt promote the economic cooperation between the two areas. In addition, it will allow mainland travelers more choices and convenience to go for worldwide trips via Hong Kong,” said Guan Dongyuan, Managing Director of Embraer in China.