A new long-haul connection operated by China Eastern from London Gatwick (LGW) to Shanghai Pudong (PVG) was announced today, as Gatwick recorded year-on-year long-haul growth of 20.8 per cent during July.
The new A330-200 service, beginning 7 December, will connect the UK to one of the world’s leading business centres, providing more than 3,700 tonnes of new belly cargo capacity each year, between LGW and PVG.
Gatwick noted that Shanghai is seen as the showpiece of China’s dramatic economic growth and, like London, is a global financial centre. It is also the leading city driving the Yangtze River Economic Zone – a region accounting for 20 per cent of China’s GDP and responsible for a third of the country’s imports and exports.
The launch of the new route follows the busiest July in Gatwick’s history, which saw the volume of cargo handled by the airport grow by 28.8 per cent year-on-year as a direct result of its soaring long-haul growth.
Gatwick’s Asia routes grew by +134.8 per cent compared with July last year, while the airport’s US connections continue to prove popular, with New York +67.5 per cent, Boston +58.7 per cent and Las Vegas +32.5 per cent.
“I’m delighted to welcome China Eastern to Gatwick and look forward to the start of this vital new link to Shanghai which, like London, is undoubtedly one of the world’s most important cities and business hubs,” said Stewart Wingate, CEO, Gatwick Airport.
“July’s traffic figures demonstrate that Gatwick’s long-haul network is driving the airport’s growth. These connections to China and other non-European countries will take on extra significance in a post-Brexit Britain as we become more reliant on them to generate vital growth through trade and by exploiting the other business opportunities that they provide,” Wingate added.