Official: Hong Kong Bans Transit Passengers

Official: Hong Kong Bans Transit Passengers

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This was first rumored a couple of days ago, but is now official. This is awful news for Cathay Pacific.

Hong Kong bans transit from 150 countries

Hong Kong has taken one of the strictest zero-tolerance approaches towards coronavirus throughout the pandemic. While many places started that way in early 2020, not many places have maintained that system, since coronavirus isn’t going anywhere.

As you’d expect, this has greatly impacted Hong Kong’s aviation landscape. To give you a sense of the impact, in November 2021 Cathay Pacific carried just 70,047 passengers, representing a 97.3% decrease compared to November 2019. Things are about to get even worse.

Hong Kong will be banning passengers from transiting through Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) if they’re coming from “Group A” destinations, which are designated high-risk countries. This includes a majority of long haul destinations in Cathay Pacific’s network.

This new policy apples from January 16 through February 15, 2022, though could be extended beyond that, based on the epidemiological situation. This is intended to allow Hong Kong to squash the omicron variant, which, well… good luck.

Passengers on flights arriving from mainland China and Taiwan can continue to connect to onwards flights globally, while passengers starting their journeys from other destination won’t be able to transit through Hong Kong during that period, with limited exceptions.

All of this is in addition to Hong Kong banning passenger flights altogether from countries that import a lot of coronavirus cases. At the moment Hong Kong has a ban in place for flights from all kinds of countries, including Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, etc.

Hong Kong is planning to ban most transit passengers

Poor, poor Cathay Pacific…

Recently I posed the question of whether Cathay Pacific will ever be able to recover. The more fundamental question is whether Hong Kong will ever recover as Asia’s global business hub (rather than a business hub for China).

The airline industry has been hit hard by coronavirus, but seriously, the impact of all of this on Cathay Pacific is on a whole different level. How much longer can Cathay Pacific survive in its current form?

The airline won’t be allowed to carry transit passengers to most countries, and the airline is banned from operating flights to countries where a lot of cases are imported from. On top of that, the carrier has had to greatly cut back dedicated cargo flights.

Something has to give with Hong Kong’s approach to coronavirus in order for the airline to be able to survive, but there’s no indication that anything will be changing.

How much longer can Cathay Pacific survive?

Bottom line

Hong Kong will shortly be banning transit passengers from most countries, in order to curb the spread of the omicron coronavirus variant. When you consider that this is in addition to Hong Kong banning flights from countries that import coronavirus cases, I can’t help but feel bad for Cathay Pacific.

The airline was at ~3% of pre-pandemic passenger numbers before these latest changes, and this will make the situation even worse. I wouldn’t recommend booking any transit flights through Hong Kong for the time being (even way in the future), because there’s no indication that anything will change here for the better.

I love you, Cathay Pacific…

How much longer will this madness go on?

Conversations (106)
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  1. Djh1 Guest

    Interesting article about Cathay's woes in the Guardian today: https://amp.theguardian.com/world/2022/jan/17/deep-trouble-cathay-pacific-descends-further-as-punitive-pandemic-worsens

  2. Andrew Guest

    I agree, Cathay Pacific business is being throttled .. unnecessarily starved of customers and one of the world's best airports must be really suffering as well.? Along with all the supporting businesses ..
    I'm glad others seem through this strategy of the Chinese govt'.
    Hope I'm wrong , but I doubt it?

    I'm unsure if we can transfer our FF miles to another OneWorld airline?

  3. DHL Guest

    Xi Jin Ping is on fantasyland coming up with the zero tolerance policy. Hope he wakes up one day but he needs to save face in order to change. Bad news for the Chinese everywhere.

  4. Nathan Guest

    Sad bye bye CX and Hong Kong. EVA and Taiwan next its inevitable.

  5. Cassio Guest

    Don't forget Hong Kong Gov is one of the shareholders of CX. They won't give a damn. As much as it breaks my heart to say this, the Cathay we know and love is gone, it is now a merely a shell of its former self.

  6. Terry Guest

    Maybe a way for the CCP to tighten it's grip on HKG & allow China Eastern & Air China to gain access to CX's routes.

  7. gideyup11 New Member

    Love CX and HKG as an airport experience. Hmm one can hardly refer to any US airport as an “experience” LOL. Question for @Ben: Have you considered putting a post up for COVID passenger transit protocol at major international airport hubs?

    We are about to fly MIA-SCL-EZE on LATAM Business (Antarctica bucket list trip!), and it was virtually impossible to find details on COVID transit protocol online (tried LATAM website, SCL website, Chilean government...

    Love CX and HKG as an airport experience. Hmm one can hardly refer to any US airport as an “experience” LOL. Question for @Ben: Have you considered putting a post up for COVID passenger transit protocol at major international airport hubs?

    We are about to fly MIA-SCL-EZE on LATAM Business (Antarctica bucket list trip!), and it was virtually impossible to find details on COVID transit protocol online (tried LATAM website, SCL website, Chilean government website, US consular website, and general G search all to no avail). Obviously we have prepared for and will comply with Argentinian entry protocol, but what (if any) additional COVID protocol does Chile require of international transit passengers? Eventually called LATAM and after a long hold, and about an hour with a friendly Colombian phone agent who had to research the question, I got my answer (thankfully!). I think a post for COVID passenger transit protocol at major international airport hubs will be useful for your readers.

  8. Another Lump Guest

    Burned my last Asia Miles on JL, and sad to say I don't anticipate flying CX or visiting HK ever again. HK is now under the thumb of the CCP. Any HKers that value their freedom just need to leave before you get disappeared. If you don't, you are just propping up the CCP.

  9. Craig Guest

    First it was intercepting passengers who insulted China (while in transit @ HKG) to quarantining people for 3-4 weeks, now this?? It feels deliberate and designed to dissuade travelers to HKG altogether and let one of the main carriers take over. Check your Twitter feed before booking anything transiting HKG (whenever transiting resumes). Sad for CX.

  10. martin Guest

    In 1966 I flew on a DC6 from South Africa to Hong Kong with stops in Mauritius, Columbo and Bangkok it took forever. Oh how times have changed

  11. KnowWhatsUp Guest

    The truth is the best form of testing would be multiple days leading up to the day of travel, and mandating everyone to be boostered and if not, then completely deny transit through the airport.

    I know of someone who got onto a flight, covid positive. Originally destined for a country that required proof of negative covid test, but since the entire family of four was positive, they had to re-route to a country...

    The truth is the best form of testing would be multiple days leading up to the day of travel, and mandating everyone to be boostered and if not, then completely deny transit through the airport.

    I know of someone who got onto a flight, covid positive. Originally destined for a country that required proof of negative covid test, but since the entire family of four was positive, they had to re-route to a country that didn't require covid negative test. Then they took a cross border train to get back into their country.

    You have no idea who is on your plane. Good for Hong Kong (except the part where they're getting creamed by commies)

  12. Tracy Guest

    What happened to China's grand bargain of prosperity in exchange of human rights? Even leveling down to the Communist Party's terms, this is unfair. Take the opposition newspapers and media, fine, but taking away apolitical businesses' source of revenue? What did Swire did to earn the ire of the Communist Party?

  13. Bob Not Bob Guest

    I hope my December 2019 transit through HKIA will not be the last. I will really miss landing early in the AM from the US and taking a hot shower and getting a foot massage before breakfast at the Pier. First world problems . . . . so, lets get everyone vaxxed and boosted hug our family and friends before jaunting all over the world again.

  14. WW Guest

    Ahh..Cathay. When I was growing-up in HKG. They were a great airline. (I took their first ever non-stop flight to LHR, on one of their 747-200s) Whenever I hear the "Love's theme" by Love Unlimited; I ALWAYS think of Cathay...their old theme -tune. RIP:- CX.

  15. Wayne Guest

    Not surprised this is now official. I had an CX upcoming flight JFK-HKG-CGK scheduled for March that got cancelled last week.

    I am a huge fan of CX. All the years flying back and forth visiting family in HK, never an issue. The ground staff, the cabin crew, all exceptional. I hope CX recovers some day. Most importantly, I also hope the CCP will reopen the border so we can return to visit the...

    Not surprised this is now official. I had an CX upcoming flight JFK-HKG-CGK scheduled for March that got cancelled last week.

    I am a huge fan of CX. All the years flying back and forth visiting family in HK, never an issue. The ground staff, the cabin crew, all exceptional. I hope CX recovers some day. Most importantly, I also hope the CCP will reopen the border so we can return to visit the city.

    Lastly I would like to add that CX is only a part of Swire's huge investment portfolio. If it means sacrificing CX to retain and grow their investments in the mainland, Swire will have no problem doing so. Sadly.....

  16. Brian Healey Guest

    Omnicron isn't going anywhere they can try to put it off as long as they want and if they want to lock in their entire country go for it but eventually it's going to get them.

  17. Sam Guest

    But at the end of the day HK is handling extremely well the pandemic figures.
    4 cases in hk against 1 million cases in the US daily! I must say HK is doing a very good job

    1. Watson New Member

      With everyone vaccinated who wants to be, case count is no longer a relevant statistic. Only hospitalizations and deaths, which remain extraordinarily low amongst the vaccinated population.

      HK is cutting off its nose to spite its face. (Or more likely, it's the CCP pulling the strings.)

  18. HK Guest

    Of course they'll recover. Honestly, who writes these articles. They seem very negative

  19. Anon Guest

    Making an assumption the powers that be want Cathay to survive. Other Mainland based airlines have a lot to gain if they fall.

  20. John Carter Guest

    Lockdown don't work. Most countries starting realize that. We just have live with COVID. Thanks China!

  21. PJ Guest

    Well shoot. I have a Cathay flight transiting through HKG in June. Doubtful I'll be allowed to take it now. I was a strong supporter of covid restrictions in 2020, but now they're being ridiculous. I agree that the PRC is putting the squeeze on Hong Kong deliberately. They want to discredit Hong Kong as a city-state that can stand on its own without them.

  22. TheTruthIs Guest

    I have no compassion for CX. It chose to fire staff for supporting Hong Kong's pro-democracy protesters on their on personal time. Because of the treatment of democracy rights protesters in Hong Kong, I refuse to fly CX or even transit thru Hong Kong, China or Macau.

    I've also divested from all China stock investments and try to not purchase anything from China. All three countries were places I travelled frequently and liked to visit until 2019. Never again.

    1. Jose Reyes Guest

      Likewise. I have now thrown my support in everything Taiwan.

    2. freedom Guest

      And Taiwan does not allow transit long before Hong Kong. LOL!

    3. X-CCCP New Member

      As before 2019 China was a democracy....yeah right

  23. Dennis Mallory Guest

    So glad i had a chance to visit the wonderful city of HK BEFORE China takeover...and COVID!

    1. freedom Guest

      Honestly, there wasn’t much freedom during colonial time, either. The almost 100 year before Hong Kong returning to China, people in Hong Kong had no democracy.

    2. AC Guest

      So you visited before 1997? You do realize it has been part of China since then right? I visited in 2018 and loved it. Plan to go back in a few years when that is possible. I have no issue with their politics and don't care about the business environment. My reason for going is that it is an incredible place and I fully expect it to be in the future. You can take it off your list due to politics but that is, frankly, your loss.

  24. James M Guest

    Left HKG right right before the pandemic and a Marco Polo Diamond member for many years.
    It pains that such a great city and airline have been drastically changed by recent events and my heart goes to the HKG people and wonderful people at CX, many of whom have become friends…

  25. PeterWH Guest

    Are we sure that Hong Kong isn’t controlled by idiots…
    Send the country broke…
    Sounds like WA.. shut as tight as a drum and don’t want to accept that this virus ‘will not’ disappear

    1. Pierre Gold

      Yes we are sure. Hong Kong is controlled by the mainland Chinese who can be called anything BUT idiots (criminals, nazis genocidal... take your choice).

      And the virus won't disappear if they so choose, because THEY control it. And it may have killed 1, 2 or 5 million in China, possibly in the opressed provinces Tibet, XingKiang betc... we'll never know and they can afford it, they have 1.5 billion subjects.

    2. Dennis Mallory Guest

      The virus WOULD dissppear if only the anti-vaxxer, anti-government anti-science/anti-intelligence MAGAMORONS, defiants/arrogants and conspiracy theorists would.

    3. Watson New Member

      Maybe in Spring 2020, but certainly not now.

  26. Brianair Guest

    Wow, sounds like the PRC's got the noose around the neck of Cathay Pacific now. And is tugging harder with every passing day, as I see more and more headlines about the protests, raids, and arrests. How times are changing. Cathay was one of the first airlines I learned about the existence of, back when I was only starting to care about aviation. My parents flew them when immigrating to the US in the '90s....

    Wow, sounds like the PRC's got the noose around the neck of Cathay Pacific now. And is tugging harder with every passing day, as I see more and more headlines about the protests, raids, and arrests. How times are changing. Cathay was one of the first airlines I learned about the existence of, back when I was only starting to care about aviation. My parents flew them when immigrating to the US in the '90s. Hong Kong to San Francisco with a stop in Vancouver. Although I never got to fly them, I always had this image of Cathay as a world-class airline with a truly premium reputation. It felt more "polished", certainly in a league above the CN3 or any PRC-based airline. It's always been easy for me to compare them to SQ, whether it was their service, their company/fleet structure, or the type of place they're based (one large hub located in a "city-state"-like territory of several million people with no domestic air market). It sucks that Hong Kong won't ever become another Singapore. We're getting to that point--no more Hong Kong as we've known it, no more Cathay, soon enough no more Cantonese. (Aside from maybe some old village people, it's already wiped from the mainland from what I heard, and the Cantonese speakers in Western countries are rapidly getting dissolved by the wave of newer Mandarin-speaking immigrants. No chance.) I fear that when I'm older, I might be one of few left that has an essentially fully Canto-speaking family background. I always believed, and I still want to believe, that Cathay is too big and strong to just go bust or end up as nothing more than a small, regional, PRC-governed airline. It's 25 years too soon. Incredibly sad.

    1. freedom Guest

      That Hong Kong did not become Singapore has everything to do with British than the Chinese….

  27. N1120A Guest

    This is absolute insanity.

    1. ConcordeBoy New Member

      ....with no sign of abating. :(

  28. Jo Banana Guest

    The problem for CX is that Swire has controlling management of the airline and is feeding a large number of its subsidiaries a significant portion of CX business.

    It seems that China wants to run this management out of the country and nationalise the carrier. Swire will be under pressure to relinquish their management. Having a 40% shareholder controlling the daily business activities is lunacy and is blatantly favouring Swire’s other companies bottom line.

  29. SullyofDoha Guest

    Hong Kong = the new Forbidden City?

  30. Greg Guest

    I have a reward fight from LAX-HKG-Bkk in July with 4 business class seats on Cathay l. I hope Covid improves and they survive so I can take my family there.

  31. CMorgan Guest

    I am currently in the Philippines. I was originally booked on CP via HK to Cebu. Thankfully CP abruptly cancelled My ticket with no explanation. I rebooked on JAL / AS via ANC, SEA, SD, NAR, MNL. I am afraid my days of booking CP J class tics at 50k each using AS mikes are over. RIP

    1. Stuart Guest

      This must be satire, lol. Pretty funny...

  32. Domingo Alcanzo Guest

    i feel sad. for so many times in the past whenever i had my vacation from work in the KSA i would pass by Hongkong via Cathay Pacific for a couple of days. as in always! God willing this pandemic shall soon end. i love to visit the place again.

  33. AC Guest

    I visited Hong Kong in 2018 and loved it. Look forward to someday going back. However, it is clear it will never be what it was. I can see it still serving a vital purpose as a business hub for China (and likely will have some tax and business incentives to remain that way). However, no real need for an airline to be based in Hong Kong with so many Chinese airlines available. Suspect there...

    I visited Hong Kong in 2018 and loved it. Look forward to someday going back. However, it is clear it will never be what it was. I can see it still serving a vital purpose as a business hub for China (and likely will have some tax and business incentives to remain that way). However, no real need for an airline to be based in Hong Kong with so many Chinese airlines available. Suspect there will still be plenty of flights into and out of Hong Kong for business or tourism purposes but don't think you will ever see a Hong Kong based airline again. COVID is a convenient excuse for China to consolidate power and keep Hong Kong on a short leash.

  34. Stuart Guest

    Truly, it's as if they are doing anything possible to kill Cathay. It's so sad. I can't help but think it's due to them being one of the last vestiges of the "old" Hong Kong and Britain. Wiping out cultures, like they have been doing in Tibet for years, is an expert technique of the Chinese government. Covid has given them carte blanche to implement it faster than ever.

  35. Stephen Guest

    And this is just one reason I will not return.

    1. AC Guest

      Why Stephen? Statement against Chinese control? IMHO Hong Kong is still one of the most amazing places to visit in the world. Doubt whatever China does will significantly impact the vast majority of tourists. If you want to make a political statement fine but frankly your loss, not theirs.

    2. TheTruthIs Guest

      I'll gladly take the same "loss".

    3. Pierre Gold

      Whatever you are smoking, may I have some ?

  36. Linda Lising Guest

    It's so bad for the people who loves to take Cathay Pacific because the trust and belief that's one of the best airline taking from North America to Asia. What suffering that Chinese government especially Carrie Lam imposed to the Hong Kong community and travelers, there are other ways to minimize the effect of pandemic situation. Too much for everyone that brings anger. Have faith in the Lord Jesus to help solve the problem. He's...

    It's so bad for the people who loves to take Cathay Pacific because the trust and belief that's one of the best airline taking from North America to Asia. What suffering that Chinese government especially Carrie Lam imposed to the Hong Kong community and travelers, there are other ways to minimize the effect of pandemic situation. Too much for everyone that brings anger. Have faith in the Lord Jesus to help solve the problem. He's the only solution to keep us safe and lead us to better thought of analyzing and finding the best recourse solving the problem.

    1. Dennis Mallory Guest

      Faith on the Lord to solve the problem? WRONG ANSWER! Mankind was given the gifts to have a peacrful, hralthy vetdant world...including free will/free choice.

      Mankind has made poor choices...and is responsible for all Earthly problems and has the responsibility to solve/fix those problems rest with US!

      It's a matter of free will/free choice.

    2. TheTruthIs Guest

      Oh Pleeeze. "faith in the Lord Jesus...to keep us safe...[and] solving the problem." That's one of the foolish reasons we have the problem. Kinda like praying for anti-vaxxer covid delusionists. Put 10 triple vaccinated elderly people in a room with 10 middle aged non-vaxxed christians and their prayer circles and a little covid virus and see who survives. It aint the ones being prayed for. Grow up.

  37. Conrad swanson Guest

    China is paying back England for the opium war of 1840-3 when England humiliated China and destroyed the palace and forced China to let England trade for Chinese products at will. CATHAY is part of the Jardine group and jardine was part of the opium war winners. China never forgets and this is pay back time
    Goodbye Cathay and Hong Kong as we knew it

    1. Johosofat Guest

      It's not part of Jardines it's part of Swire.

  38. Peter Ehrler Guest

    China is killing CX deliberately. They wand CX gone to be replaced by Chinese Airlines

    1. Watson New Member

      I suspect the PRC is very interested in the success of the pro-CCP Greater Bay Airlines over CX.

      https://onemileatatime.com/greater-bay-airlines-hong-kong/

  39. Mr.Rizal Estanislao Guest

    I was book on Feb 10 flying from London to manila n transit to Hong-Kong.. what will be the situation

  40. Ed Guest

    Hong Kong is so densely populated that, once released, the virus will spread uncontrollably. That said, the country can't shut down forever. The world will be living with the Covid for decades to come. It's impossible for a country to seal itself off for that long. At some point, Hong Kong needs to decide to rejoin the world and deal with infections as best it can. I've lived in Hong Kong and watched it grow;...

    Hong Kong is so densely populated that, once released, the virus will spread uncontrollably. That said, the country can't shut down forever. The world will be living with the Covid for decades to come. It's impossible for a country to seal itself off for that long. At some point, Hong Kong needs to decide to rejoin the world and deal with infections as best it can. I've lived in Hong Kong and watched it grow; from the old farmlands in the New Territories, rural hikes on Lantau, the final years of Kai Tak, to modern mega-developments. I want the best for the island, its residents, and Cathay Pacific.

    1. David Diamond

      Hong Kong can and will "shut down" for as long as China stops foreigners from entering, and if that's forever, then Hong Kong will follow. Hong Kong no longer has any semblance of autonomy. If the current rhetoric about "decoupling" the American and Chinese economies hold true, then I wouldn't hold my breath when it comes to Hong Kong reopening.

    2. Ken Guest

      God bless you my good sir...

  41. Blanca Guest

    If they were actually serious about suppressing imported cases they would have done this long ago. Just think of all the airport employees etc mixing with lord knows who then going in to home in crowded Hong Kong every night.

    I was trying to think of a transit situation where I could see my Hong Kong friends for a few hours at the airport . I haven’t been in person since Christmas 2019!

    1. TranceXplant New Member

      I'm in a more extreme version of the same boat. Because my girlfriend lives there.

      I was also last in Hong Kong in December of 2019. Due purely to luck, she was visiting the States in March 2020 when everything shut down, so we were able to spend much of the pandemic together. But since she returned to HK this past August, there hasn't been any feasible way for us to see each other....

      I'm in a more extreme version of the same boat. Because my girlfriend lives there.

      I was also last in Hong Kong in December of 2019. Due purely to luck, she was visiting the States in March 2020 when everything shut down, so we were able to spend much of the pandemic together. But since she returned to HK this past August, there hasn't been any feasible way for us to see each other. Sure, I could go spend 3 weeks in one of the last remaining Group B countries in order to make myself eligible for entry, followed by another 3 weeks in quarantine. But that's not realistic. So it's all very frustrating.

  42. Leigh Member

    Feel bad for CX, and for oneworld, for that matter. CX will survive, but likely in a smaller format...it won't be regional like MH, but hard to imagine the global network returning in the same size. We can only speculate.

    In the old days when I lived in SFO, HKG was a frequent quick leisure destination...many fond memories...especially of flying in the cockpit into the old Kai Tak (back when we could request the opportunity)....

    Feel bad for CX, and for oneworld, for that matter. CX will survive, but likely in a smaller format...it won't be regional like MH, but hard to imagine the global network returning in the same size. We can only speculate.

    In the old days when I lived in SFO, HKG was a frequent quick leisure destination...many fond memories...especially of flying in the cockpit into the old Kai Tak (back when we could request the opportunity). HKG has evolved in the last decade and it no longer feels the same to me...

    At least AA has the equity investment with China Southern, and I would not be surprised to see their oneworld entry expedited, if possible and desired by CZ.

  43. Jayjay Guest

    I love you, Cathay Pacific.
    I love you, Hong Kong.

    Stay strong.

  44. Andy Diamond

    This is really sad. Cathay Pacific was/is an amazing airline with highly dedicated staff. In my view, one of the best if not the best.

    1. Mr.Rizal Estanislao Guest

      I was book on Feb 10 flying from London to manila n transit to Hong-Kong.. what will be the situation

    2. ChuckMO New Member

      Better re-book.

    3. Peter Guest

      Im pretty sure that you will need to cancel and make new bookings to avoid HK !

      Maybe London direct Taiwan then on to Manila might be one suggestion ?

    4. glenn t Diamond

      Agree with @Andy. It is hugely disappointing to see the Chinese communist government squeeze the life out of CX, one of the very few premium airlines in all Asia.
      Wouldn't care less if it was one of the ho-hum mainland Chinese airlines.

  45. DenB Diamond

    it would be useful and relevant to consider revenues and costs, in an apocalyptic article about "passenger" numbers. Boxes on economy seats (because the hold is completely full) are "paying passengers". Friends at EVA send me pictures of passenger cabins packed to the rafters with cargo. maybe CX is doing the same. If so, don't count them out yet. We're less important than we think! LOL

    1. Icarus Guest

      They are also prohibited from operating cargo flights to several countries including the US, France, U.K. and Philippines . It’s not quite the same if they become a cargo only carrier

  46. Guri S Guest

    China is slowly killing HongKong and making it a 3rd tier city.

    I believe CX will be set back but not disappear from the radar.
    Most of those fighting for Democracy have left HK and those that stay behind have agreed to live under China.

    I am hoping that the Swire group can reposition themselves out of HKG and take CX with them.

    1. Pierre Gold

      This is precisely what China wants, the disappearance of Hong Kong as a "Special Economic Region" and its full integration into China... and they absolutely have the means to make it happen This bodes extremely bad for Taiwan which will follow within single-digits years if not months. Since you are a Hong Kong old timer, you know full well, as I do, that the manoeuvers to change HK started in 1997. In the past recent...

      This is precisely what China wants, the disappearance of Hong Kong as a "Special Economic Region" and its full integration into China... and they absolutely have the means to make it happen This bodes extremely bad for Taiwan which will follow within single-digits years if not months. Since you are a Hong Kong old timer, you know full well, as I do, that the manoeuvers to change HK started in 1997. In the past recent years it just accelerated.

      Here is not the place to discuss it but those who still think that the Covid release was accidental and independent of establishing a New World Order, INCLUDING the present situation in the USA are in for a major shock. I am not even thinking of or addressing the multiple controversies about who did or didn't do what and when in this country's politics during the past two years. They are not of the same magnitude and were all planned, remarkably executed too, 7000 miles away.

    2. David Diamond

      Swire has significant investment sin businesses and properties in both Hong Kong and the mainlands. To think they would uproot themselves out of HK just because of Cathay is nothing more than wishful thinking.

  47. jojo Guest

    HK, the companies in the city and the people that live there will be crushed until they bend the knee to the CCP. HK will be strangled until it is just another chinese city. the brain drain and capital drain out of the city is what the ccp wants to destroy the HK advantage

  48. Martin expat Guest

    Hkg and CX will only survive if China wants it to survive. So sad for all HK people and expats who created HKG into the vibrant place it has become.

  49. David Verex Guest

    Hkg is fast becoming a new North Korea. 21 day Government detention including a stay at Penny Bay is a severe mental hardship.

  50. Jeff Guest

    This is sad. HKG was such a fun place to visit and CX first class amazing. I'm afraid I'll never go back (or want to).

  51. Icarus Guest

    I’ve flown CX many times and HKG is a great airport. Filipinos refer to
    it as their favourite local airport and airline. This is the nail in the coffin. I don’t understand why they are building a third runway.

    An analogy would be the Dutch government banning transit passengers at schiphol.

  52. Andrea Guest

    So much "conspiracy theory" around the Cathay Pacific saga.... May be I try to clarify some of these 'theories"..... (I'm an expat working and living in Hong Kong in the international finance field, I'm an American with home at California)...

    1) This is the ownership structure of Cathay Pacific:
    Air China (a state owned company owned by China) owns 30%, Qatar Airways 10%, Hong Kong government owns 6% (HK government just injected about $6...

    So much "conspiracy theory" around the Cathay Pacific saga.... May be I try to clarify some of these 'theories"..... (I'm an expat working and living in Hong Kong in the international finance field, I'm an American with home at California)...

    1) This is the ownership structure of Cathay Pacific:
    Air China (a state owned company owned by China) owns 30%, Qatar Airways 10%, Hong Kong government owns 6% (HK government just injected about $6 Billion USD into Cathay 18 months ago), Swire Group 40% (the original UK conglomerate that started Cathay Pacific); the rest 14% owns by small investors and stock holders.

    So Hong Kong government and China government owns about 40% of Cathay. Add to the fact that Hong Kong's commercial cargo business and leisure/business travel depends substantially on Cathay Pacific, It is to Hong Kong and China's best interest to keep Cathay Pacific afloat. No, they don't want to destroy Cathay Pacific... (I work in the international finance and involve heavily in aviation and hospitality industry in Asia, I guess I understand more about this business than most casual travelers...)

    The current aviation ban is mostly the result of the unrealistic "Zero Covid" strategy that China adopted (HK has no choice but to follow the footstep of China). China, unlike other western countries, can survive and thrive solely on its own internal domestic GDP, they can survive and still thrive (relatively to other western countries include USA, EU, etc..) without foreign capital, investments. So their approach is let the world heals from the Covid, then they open up the boundary.... simple as this.

    1. Willy Wong Guest

      I don't think being a member of the 50 cent army means you are involved in "international finance, aviation, and hospitality."

    2. David Diamond

      Finally someone who seems to get it. Saying Cathay should leave Hong Kong and establish themselves elsewhere for a chance to survive is just... wishful thinking. Swire has very significant investments, in both business and properties, in HK and the mainlands. They're not about to flee Hong Kong even IF they lose Cathay.

    3. Pierre Gold

      It's not a matterr of fleeing Hong Kong, Hong Kong as we've known it is diappearing fast.

      One can draw a parallel with Nazi Germany where Mercedes, Porsche, Lufthansa, Siemens and BASF (which by the way manufactured Zyklon B gas) did not flee when the 3rd Reich set in. They just started obeying the new masters. As China quickly becomes the new Nazi Germany, parallels between the countries are fitting.

      In another German parallel, this...

      It's not a matterr of fleeing Hong Kong, Hong Kong as we've known it is diappearing fast.

      One can draw a parallel with Nazi Germany where Mercedes, Porsche, Lufthansa, Siemens and BASF (which by the way manufactured Zyklon B gas) did not flee when the 3rd Reich set in. They just started obeying the new masters. As China quickly becomes the new Nazi Germany, parallels between the countries are fitting.

      In another German parallel, this time at the end of WW1, the 2 provinces of Alsace and Lorraine, conquered by Germany in 1870, reverted to France. Hong Kong being returned to Britain at the end of the present saga seems, however, unlikely.

    4. Stuart Guest

      All of that makes sense until you dig deeper. Beijing could care less about Cathay or its investment in it. In fact, their demise is a perfect goal at eradicating all British ties to the past and erasing Hong Kong culture. For Air China, while an investor (as part of the Government), they are now able to soon buy the remainder of the company for cents on the dollar and reshape Hong Kong air travel....

      All of that makes sense until you dig deeper. Beijing could care less about Cathay or its investment in it. In fact, their demise is a perfect goal at eradicating all British ties to the past and erasing Hong Kong culture. For Air China, while an investor (as part of the Government), they are now able to soon buy the remainder of the company for cents on the dollar and reshape Hong Kong air travel. This will include erasing the brand or moving it towards a more regional focus. If you are in finance and focusing on transportation I would assume you studied people like Carl Icahn and how eroding an airline works to the benefit of motive. They would be more than happy to see Cathay collapse, even losing their investments, for the long term gain.

    5. Pierre Gold

      Andrea,

      EVERY line in your comment shows how much you don't get what's happening. For China, Covid is not a pest to eradicate, it's a tool to submit the World into compliance. Once you'll admit this everything will become clearer.

      A country which has killed 8 to 10 million people worldwide, plus an unknown number of their own (it will never be known bu with a population of 1.6 billion they can afford it) doesn't...

      Andrea,

      EVERY line in your comment shows how much you don't get what's happening. For China, Covid is not a pest to eradicate, it's a tool to submit the World into compliance. Once you'll admit this everything will become clearer.

      A country which has killed 8 to 10 million people worldwide, plus an unknown number of their own (it will never be known bu with a population of 1.6 billion they can afford it) doesn't give a hoot about CX even and in particular if they own it or have the controlling interest.

    6. JWags Guest

      "American with home at California"

      "I work in the international finance and involve heavily in aviation"

      ...yea you're not fooling anyone with the "American expat" act :)

  53. Fleedom Guest

    Hong Kong SAR is controlling this in order to curb the COVID cases and then reopen mutually to Chinese Mainland and Macau.

    Watch some TVB news for the latest information.

  54. Joe Guest

    The Chinese Government has a long and unfriendly history with Swire, Cathay's owners. The writing is on the wall.

  55. Burritomiles Guest

    By far my biggest travel regret is not going to HK. I've been all over Asia but never made it to HK before the Pandemic. As soon as Taiwan opens up I'm going because I've transited TPE many times but never gone outside the airport. Gotta see it before PRC takes over that island also.

    1. DenB Diamond

      Too late. Post-pandemic, what you'll see of HK will be very different from what I saw in 2018. I have similar regrets: didn't fly Concorde for the most frivolous reason (I didn't have the money, but I did have "room" on a credit card and should have maxed it out and flown it), didn't visit New Orleans before katrina breached the levies. But I made it to Babylon Bangkok (RIP) and visited Hong Kong and Taiwan. Carpe Diem!!!

    2. Never In Doubt Guest

      @DenB, Nonsense.

      Post COVID (if that ever happens for HK!) Hong Kong will be little changed for *tourists*.

      For citizens, sadly, it’s another story.

      @BurritoMiles, go visit, you’ll like it.

    3. ConcordeBoy New Member

      "didn't visit New Orleans before katrina breached the levies."

      Unless you planned to visit New Orleans-East or St. Bernard (neither of which has any draw whatsoever to tourists, with the loss of JazzLand), then you haven't missed out on anything in NOLA.... 99% of the tourist areas/attractions are back to what they were. Should go.

  56. freedom Guest

    If PRC is doing this to hurt Hong Kong and Cathay, why does Taiwan go even further than Hong Kong? Taiwan has restricted transit at TPE longer than Hong Kong…

    1. Watson New Member

      The Taiwanese government is supporting BR and CI.

  57. playalaguna Guest

    PRC is working to crush Hong Kong, Crovid 19 is only another excuse to isolate, shutter and hide what PRC is doing the pacify Hong Kong into the PRC.

    Hong Kong, and, or Cathay Pacific will not emerge from Covid 19. What PRC is doing to the residents is far worse than the virus.

  58. Tom Guest

    PRC has decided HK needs to be crushed and CX is just collateral damage. HK will never recover, it will be a backwater as it will no longer have any advantage over other Chinese cities. Sad, sad, sad

  59. BF Guest

    Given the stance CX took in 2019 during that movement. This is a given. The writing is on he wall. If you still have any Asia Miles left, I'd burn them any way I can.

  60. MT Guest

    No surprise of drastic measures given the density of the population.

  61. Brian Guest

    I have a tripped planned in late august to go to Japan and Bali and returning home through Hong Kong. What are the chances this trip will happen?

    1. Nelson Guest

      Hope you will make it but keep in mind, nowadays you are (almost) only sure you will fly the moment you are buckled up in your seat.

  62. stogieguy7 Gold

    The PRC is trying to squeeze HK in any way that it can. And, it most certainly favors PRC-friendly airlines over a capitalist firm like Cathay. So, I don't see this as Cathay being a random victim - I think that pushing them to the brink is part of this. And if China was so damn concerned about the virus, why did they create it in the first place? Huh?

    Hypocrites.

  63. iv Guest

    I think the government of China is slowing and deliberately burying Cathay Pacific.

    1. Steve Diamond

      Burying Cathay and the entire economy of HK. Slowly but surely driving out western companies and investments and forcing all HK citizens to work for Chinese companies. Sad.

Featured Comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

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Steve Diamond

Burying Cathay and the entire economy of HK. Slowly but surely driving out western companies and investments and forcing all HK citizens to work for Chinese companies. Sad.

7
Guri S Guest

China is slowly killing HongKong and making it a 3rd tier city. I believe CX will be set back but not disappear from the radar. Most of those fighting for Democracy have left HK and those that stay behind have agreed to live under China. I am hoping that the Swire group can reposition themselves out of HKG and take CX with them.

6
iv Guest

I think the government of China is slowing and deliberately burying Cathay Pacific.

6
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