Changi Airport Group (CAG) in Singapore has received the inaugural flight of SF Airlines on a Boeing 767F aircraft from Shenzhen, China.

With the landing of the aircraft at the CAG, SF Airlines became the first Chinese express airline to operate between Singapore and China. The service is expected to further boost air trade between the two countries.

China is one of the largest air cargo markets for Changi Airport and registered over 270,000t of airfreight throughput for the 12 months ending June this year.

The airport noted that main deck airfreight capacity to and from Shenzhen will increase by about 16% on this route with the addition of SF Airlines’ weekly service.

“Significantly, this allows for more cargo flows from China to and through Changi Airport.”

Changi Airport Group Air Hub Development managing director Lim Ching Kiat said: “We welcome SF Airlines to Changi Airport’s family of cargo airlines. Significantly, this allows for more cargo flows from China to and through Changi Airport, and will secure Singapore’s position as a premier regional cargo hub.

“There is also growing demand by the Chinese market for perishables and pharmaceutical products from the Southwest Pacific and Southeast Asian regions; both are among the top cargo segments passing through Changi Airport from these regions to China, with a robust year-on-year growth.”

Kiat further noted that the added capacity by SF Airlines marks the start of expected growth of express flows on these routes.

The new Singapore services of SF Airlines will be an extension of SF Group’s business in Singapore.

Last year, Changi Airport served 62.2 million passengers from across the globe and handled 2.13 million tonnes of airfreight throughput.