Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) has recorded a year-on-year increase of 24.3% in freight movements last month.

However, the cargo throughput decreased to 338,000t, marking a decrease of 14.2% compared to the same period last year.

In April, 32,000 passengers travelled through the airport, which marks a decrease of 99.5% compared to the same month last year. Flight movements also decreased by 73.5%, with 9,445 flight movements.

All non-Hong Kong residents arriving from other regions are prohibited to enter Hong Kong. HKIA has also extended the suspension of transit / transfer services at the airport.

Visitor and transfer / transit traffic saw a decline of almost 100% while the Hong Kong resident travel declined by 99%, compared to the same month last year.

North America was the strongest market for cargo exports while the traffic to and from Southeast Asia and India declined significantly.

Airport Authority Hong Kong Commercial executive director Cissy Chan said: “It is a challenging time for air cargo as airlines have suspended most of their passenger flights, leading to a significant reduction in belly capacity for cargo.

“However, the demand for air cargo has remained relatively strong, especially for commodities related to Covid-19 prevention, including face masks and other medical supplies, as well as consumer electronics.

“HKIA has maintained a relatively stable cargo throughput, attributable to the airport’s extensive freighter network and agility in facilitation of chartered cargo flights, in addition to airlines using passenger aircraft for all cargo operations. The AA will continue to work with our cargo operators to provide efficient and reliable cargo handling services.”

In the first four months of this year, the total passenger numbers saw a year-on-year decrease of 67.5%, with 8.2 million people, while flight movements totalled 72,805, marking a year-on-year decline of 48.5%.

Hong Kong Airport Authority (AA) reported that 576,000 passengers travelled through the airport in March, which marks a decrease of 91% compared to the same month last year.