Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) reported a 4.7% rise in passenger traffic during 2012 with 56.5 million passengers.
Annual aircraft movement at the airport increased 5.3% to 352,000, compared to 2011, while the airport's cargo volume during the year rose 2.2% to 4 million tonnes.
HKIA's December 2012 passenger traffic reached five million passengers, up 3.9%, while cargo and flight movements rose 7.6% and 5.1% respectively to 372,000 tonnes and 30,800, compared to the same period in 2011.
Airport Authority Hong Kong chief executive officer Stanley Hui Hon-chung said that despite the challenging global economic environment, regional economic growth continued to drive traffic increases at HKIA in 2012.
"This past year we welcomed nine new airlines and expanded our global network to about 170 destinations," Hon-chung said.
According to the airport, the rise in passenger traffic in December was mainly due to 7% rise in domestic traffic over the corresponding month last year, with improved traffic to and from South East Asia and Taiwan.
Cargo traffic during December was mainly driven by exports that rose 8%, which was mainly driven cargo throughput to and from North America and the Chinese Mainland.
"Heading into 2013, whilst the financial woes in the Eurozone will probably continue and the weak market conditions in the US remain for some time, GDP growth forecasts for the Chinese Mainland and South East Asia are 8.1% and 5.2%, respectively, much higher than most other parts in the world, " Hon-chung added.
"We are therefore cautiously optimistic about achieving mild traffic growth at HKIA in 2013."
The HK$12bn ($1.54bn) midfield and apron development project at the airport is underway and after completion it is expected to help the airport manage passenger traffic growth in the medium-term.
"We are also keenly focused on achieving sustainable development while operating HKIA safely, efficiently and reliably, in line with the airport's unsurpassed reputation for service excellence," Hon-chung said.
Image: Hong Kong International Airport is builkding the phase 1 of the new midfield concourse which will have 20 aircraft parking stands. Photo: courtesy of Airport Authority Hong Kong (AA).