Chinese airports and airlines have boosted their IT spending with a particular focus on cybersecurity, according to the SITA 2018 Air Transport IT Insights for China.

The study found that investments are also being increased to equip new airports and terminals with the latest technology and manage growing passengers numbers.

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An influx of passengers in China surged approximately 13% to more than one billion over the past year. Subsequently, Chinese airports increased their IT investment from 5.6% of revenues last year to 7.5%, which is more than the global average of 5.69%.

The report further highlights that around 94% of airlines and airports are planning major cybersecurity programmes or R&D over the next three years.

This year, airlines and airports are planning to spend 7% and 18% of their IT budget on cybersecurity respectively.

“Our research shows that 100% of airlines and 95% of airports have digital transformation already in place, under implementation, or planned.”

SITA East Asia vice-president and general manager May Zhou said: “Digitisation is top of mind for both airlines and airports in China. Our research shows that 100% of airlines and 95% of airports have digital transformation already in place, under implementation, or planned.”

Alongside IT, baggage management is another key investment in China. Almost 100% of Chinese airlines are planning to have more than 50% of their route network compliant with the IATA 753 Resolution by next year.

Additionally, 100% of the airports will be using two of the four steps tracked by the end of 2021. Nearly, 94% of them will have transfer and arrival tracking also in place.

Zhou added: “Over the past number of years, there has been a focus on investing in disruption management and A-CDM and the industry is now enjoying the benefits of those investments.

“Today we see that airlines and airports in China have set their sights on improving baggage management. With this commitment, China is set to lead the world in efficiently managing this process, reducing costs and improving the passenger baggage experience.”