WORLD ROUTES 2018 HEADS FOR GUANGZHOU, CHINA

Guangdong airport authority set to host the global meeting for airlines, airports and aviation stakeholders

World Routes 2018 will be hosted from September 15-18 by Guangdong Airport Authority, the owner of Baiyun International Airport. Baiyun is China’s third busiest airport and the 15th busiest in the world, handling nearly 60 million passengers in 2016. A second terminal, opening this year, will be able to handle up to 80 million passengers a year.

At the conference, airlines, airports and destinations plan and negotiate future air services.

Routes events are unique forums dedicated to the development of new air services. They revolve around pre-scheduled meetings, an exhibition and a conference. Four “regional” route development forums are held between February and June in the Americas, Asia, Europe and Africa, with the flagship World Routes event taking place in September.

Guangzhou, an economic hub on the Pearl River in Guangdong Province, South China, will provide the perfect platform for the event in 2018. The city has been an important trade centre for 2,000 years due to its strategic position near the South China Sea. Its economic strength has helped Guangdong to maintain its status as the richest province in China for the last three decades.

The colourful Canton Tower and Cantonese cuisine have made Guangzhou a popular choice with international tourists. Other attractions include the asymmetrical Guangzhou Opera House, the Five Rams Statue in Yuexiu Park, a variety of Buddhist temples and Baiyun “White Clouds” Mountain.

Guangzhou’s growth is set to continue into the next decade as Baiyun’s expansion projects are completed. The airport will be transformed into a five-runway, three- terminal operation that can handle 62,000 ights, 100 million passengers and three million tons of cargo a year by 2025.

Steven Small, brand director of Routes said: “Baiyun International Airport’s development plans reflect Guangzhou’s economic strength. China is due to become the world’s largest aviation market in the next seven years and Baiyun will take a leading role in this growth.” International route development professionals from 270 airlines, 600 airports and 80 tourism authorities attended World Routes 2017 in Barcelona, and Guangzhou can expect similar numbers next year.

Kejian Zhang, Chairman of the Board of Guangdong Airport Authority said: “It’s a great honour to win the right to host World Routes 2018. I believe it will be an excellent opportunity to showcase Guangzhou City and Guangdong Province to the looking forward to meeting all of the friends of this great event. We’ll be meeting them with our best service and full enthusiasm”.