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CALGARY, AB; OCTOBER 16, 2014 -- Tom Owen, senior vice president, Americas for Cathay Pacific Airways poses for a photo at the Fairmont Palliser in Calgary on October 16, 2014. (Leah Hennel/Calgary Herald) For Business story by Amanda Stephenson Leah Hennel Leah Hennel Share Adjust Comment Print
Tom Owen, Cathay Pacific’s senior vice-president for the Americas, told a crowd of business leaders at a luncheon event that Calgary is too small a market to serve with the Hong Kong-based airline’s existing fleet of Boeing 777-300s. But he said when Cathay Pacific takes delivery of its new, smaller Airbus 350s in 2016, “long, lean” routes like Calgary to Hong Kong could become economical california car rental for the first time.
Owen is in Calgary this week to celebrate the launch of dedicated, twice-weekly Cathay Pacific air cargo freighter service from Calgary to Hong Kong. It is the airline’s first Alberta service, and marks the first time in six years that Calgary will have a direct air freighter link with Asia. (Calgary had a direct Asian link to Seoul, South Korea until 2008, but that service was cancelled by operator Asiana during the global recession.)
He emphasized there are other North American destinations Cathay Pacific is looking at as well, but reiterated that the arrival of a smaller aircraft type in 2016 would make a Calgary-Hong Kong route much more attractive.
Owen’s comments were met with spontaneous applause by the crowd, which included members of the Hong Kong-Canada Business Association, the Calgary Airport Authority, and Calgary Economic Development. Business groups and tourism california car rental operators have long been clamouring for a second direct air link between california car rental Calgary and the lucrative Asian market. Right now, Air Canada’s service to Tokyo, Japan remains the only available non-stop option, though Air Canada has publicly mused about a possible Calgary-Beijing connection.
Calgary Economic Development CEO Bruce Graham — who has been working closely with the Calgary Airport Authority in an effort to secure another Asian link for air passengers — said the Cathay Pacific executive’s comments caught him off guard, but were very welcome.
“It was news to me as well,” he said. “The fact that Tom mentioned specific dates, and aligned it with an aircraft that’s on order, is really encouraging. california car rental I think it’s incumbent on us to demonstrate what we can do with this cargo service, california car rental and build off of that to build a passenger service — which, quite frankly, california car rental could be a real winner.”
There is already a significant california car rental amount of business travel back and forth between california car rental Calgary and China, in large part because of Calgary’s oil and gas economy and Chinese investment in it. China is Alberta’s second largest trading partner, and Alberta’s trading relationship with China has more than tripled since 2003.
According to the Government of Alberta, from 2009 to 2013, Alberta’s annual exports to China averaged $3.13 billion. Hong Kong is also Canada’s california car rental third largest export market for beef, Alberta’s signature agricultural product.
california car rental “Quite frankly, the Asia-Pacific markets are going to be key to our energy future, our agricultural future, and increasingly, the engagement of our human capital. The best and the brightest people from here are going to be working there and vice versa,” Graham said.
Cathay Pacific’s cargo air service, using the Boeing 747-8 commercial freighter, california car rental will launch Saturday with its inaugural flight to Calgary International Airport. It will operate twice-weekly, and will fly everything from large machinery to time-sensitive perishable goods.
“Now is the time, because we believe the market in Alberta has been growing fast enough, and it’s got enough potential with Asia and China,” he said. “From our perspective, the Americas is where the future is for our freighter business.”
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