Chengdu Tianfu International Airport is put into operation: In the “dual airport” era, airlines are busy expanding routes and regional airlines usher in a golden moment? | Daily Economic News

On June 27, with the operation of Chengdu Tianfu International Airport, Chengdu officially entered the “double airport” era.

With the gradual transition of airlines, the gradual release of high-quality moments is beneficial to the optimization of the overall supply structure of the industry. Both the head airline and the small and medium airlines will increase the number of flights. The reporter of “Daily Business News” noticed that regional aviation has become one of the main points of the routes added by the airlines.

Xiao Liang, deputy general manager of the Sichuan branch of China Eastern Airlines, said in an interview that increasing branch input is affirmative, and a “main-support” combination model will be formed in the future. The reporter found that through the financial statements of China Airlines, the head airline of the regional airlines, it can be seen that regional airlines have demonstrated a certain degree of anti-risk capability and recovery momentum.

On the other hand, the incremental demand brought by the “dual airports” will also optimize the development of the industrial chain. Li Biao, Chairman of Haite High-tech, said that Chengdu has become a gathering place for the aviation industry and aviation technology industry, and government departments can issue corresponding policies. Better promote the aviation technology industry to become bigger and stronger locally and attract some capable companies to invest.

Major airlines expand routes

At 11:25 this morning, China Eastern Airlines’ world’s first “Jinbo” painted aircraft and the B777-300ER with the ink-painted panda “Jinbao” taxied to the runway. On its MU5416 flight, more than 310 passengers were on board from Tianfu International. The airport flies to Shanghai. On the same day, there was also an A350-900 passenger plane with the emblem of China Eastern Airlines Lingyan, known as the “Sunglass Man”, and equipped with the world’s most advanced cabin service system. It took off from Tianfu International Airport at 12 o’clock. It carried out flight MU9697 and took more than 280 passengers. Fly to Beijing Daxing International Airport.

Xie Yuanzheng, the five-star captain of China Eastern Airlines, made the maiden flight together with the passengers. He told reporters: “In just a few decades, our civil aviation has gone from being a poor one to today’s world-class level… Our generation of civil aviation people and this generation of pilots have realized their dreams.”

As the captain of the maiden flight of the East Aerospace Government International Airport, Hou Dandong also recalled the scene of the airport’s test flight. In Hou Dandong’s view, the biggest difficulty in the test flight is that an airport tests multiple runways at the same time. This puts high demands on the coordination of air traffic control departments, airlines, and airports-the take-off and landing of each aircraft. Time and follow-up procedures must be arranged.

Hou Dandong said that in the future, whenever he recalls the maiden flight of Tianfu International Airport, he will be proud to be a witness and witness of this history.

Tianfu International Airport was put into operation, and the airport has announced the flight schedule for the first flight season. There are commercial routes such as Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, as well as tourist routes such as Qingdao, Haikou and Sanya.

“From July 14th, Tianfu International Airport will increase the frequency of commercial routes such as Beijing Daxing, Shanghai Pudong, Hangzhou, Nanjing, etc., and at the same time add cultural and tourism routes such as Lijiang, Guilin, and Beihai. The daily scheduled number of flights will reach 271, satisfying the needs of the general public. Summer travel needs of passengers.” said Zhang Honggang, deputy general manager of Sichuan Airport Group and general manager of Chengdu Tianfu International Airport Branch.

Air China, China Eastern Airlines, Sichuan Airlines will transfer some flights to Tianfu International Airport from June 27; Xiamen Airlines, Spring Airlines, Juneyao Airlines, Lucky Air will transfer all flights from June 30 Operate to Tianfu International Airport; Chengdu Airlines will transfer some flights to Tianfu International Airport for operations from June 30.

Successful maiden flight of Tianfu International Airport

Image source: Every reporter Cao Bingfan

The first batch of 8 airlines transferred to Tianfu International Airport, and the air route operation plan of Tianfu International Airport has also been announced.

Specifically, the first batch of flights at the International Airport of the China National Aeronautics and Space Administration will be completed in three phases. The first phase will fly two routes to and from the capital of Beijing and Shanghai Pudong; the second phase will add new routes to and from Shijiazhuang, Tianjin, Wudangshan, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Haikou and other routes; Hohhot, Changchun, Xichang, Kunming, Beihai, Shantou, Hangzhou and other routes will be added in the third phase. After three phases of step-by-step operations, Air China’s daily average daily take-off and landing flights at Tianfu International Airport will reach 60, reaching 30 domestic cities.

Eastern Airlines is one of the four base airlines of Tianfu International Airport. Eastern Airlines operates routes at Tianfu International Airport including Chengdu Tianfu to Beijing Daxing, Shanghai Pudong, Shanghai Hongqiao, and Kunming, Wuhan, Hangzhou, Taiyuan, Xi’an, Qingdao, Hefei, There are more than 20 direct and stopover routes including Xining.

China Eastern Airlines will gradually increase the number of flights at Tianfu International Airport in stages. By the winter and spring season of 2021, it will plan to add flights to Hangzhou, Qingdao, Ningbo, Taiyuan, Hefei and other destinations. By the summer and autumn season of 2022, Shanghai Airlines and China United Airlines will all transfer to Tianfu International Airport for operation. By then, China Eastern Airlines and its subsidiaries are expected to carry out 137 inbound and outbound flights every day at Tianfu International Airport.

Sichuan Airlines is expected to launch 10 aircraft, operate 48 flights, 25 domestic routes, and reach 29 domestic destinations. Among them, in the early stage, Sichuan Airlines will first launch 6 on-site aircraft and operate 25 flights a day, opening flights from Chengdu Tianfu to Beijing, Tianjin, Dalian, Hangzhou, Guangzhou, Urumqi, and Hohhot. From July 14th, Sichuan Airlines will increase its capacity, transfer 4 aircraft, add 23 flights, and operate 48 daily flights. It will open Chengdu Tianfu to Boao, Anshan, Kunming, Xining, Yinchuan, Nanning, Lhasa and other flights.

In 2023, Sichuan Airlines will operate more than 45 aircraft at Tianfu International Airport, and will exceed 80 aircraft in 2025.

A person from Lucky Air told the “Daily Economic News” reporter that after Lucky Air’s transition, it plans to deploy 6 overnight capacity, including 2 A330 models, and implement 14 Tianfu in and out routes, which are connected to Kunming and Kunming. There are 17 domestic cities in Tianjin, Jinan, Sanya, Zhengzhou, Hohhot, Nanjing, Lhasa, Kangding, Cangyuan, Lancang, Zhaotong, Xishuangbanna, Shijiazhuang, Zhangjiakou, Ganzhou and Ali.

Chengdu Airlines stated that it will actively adjust its strategic layout based on the characteristics and advantages of the new structure of Chengdu’s “two fields in one”, strive to place approximately 30 aircraft at Tianfu International Airport, and gradually open branch lines in the southwest and northwest regions and within 1,500 kilometers. For airport routes, cooperate with Tianfu International Airport to achieve the goal of building a hub transit network, and gradually form a “dual hub” and “dual fleet” operation mode with complementary functions and coordinated development.

Regional aviation usher in new opportunities

According to the “Chengdu Tianfu International Airport Transition and Operation and the “Two in One” Flight Schedule Resource Allocation Plan”, some flights at Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport will be transferred to Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport through four seasons (from the date of operation to March 2023). Tianfu International Airport. At that time, Tianfu International Airport will operate all international flights and major domestic flights, while Shuangliu International Airport will retain domestic boutique routes and routes from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan.

With the gradual transition of airlines, the gradual release of high-quality moments is beneficial to the optimization of the overall supply structure of the industry. Statistics show that in 2018, the passenger throughput of Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport exceeded 50 million passengers, and it reached 55.86 million passengers in 2019. With the opening of Tianfu International Airport, the tight air cargo capacity will gradually ease.

In fact, the constant tension is one of the factors that restrict the airlines from opening routes. In the eyes of industry insiders, the commissioning of Tianfu International Airport will help airlines open up more routes and expand their business. On the other hand, the commissioning of the new airport is also conducive to optimizing the shipping structure, especially for feeder shipping.

Overlooking Tianfu International Airport from the air

Picture source: every photo by reporter Zhang Jian

The regional aviation mode, as the name implies, is a flight between non-mainline cities, and the usual flight distance is between 600 kilometers and 1,200 kilometers. Compared with the “large arteries” of the main line, the branch line aviation is more like a small blood vessel.

According to statistics from Huachuang Securities, there are less than 200 domestic regional jets, concentrated in nine airlines, including Tianjin Airlines, China Airlines, and Happy Airlines. According to the “Domestic Regional Airport Development Observation Report” released by the Fei Changzhun Big Data Research Institute in June 2018, from June 2017 to May 2018, only 23.4% of domestic regional airport flights were operated by regional aircraft. .

The “Daily Economic News” reporter noted that compared with the main line, the regional aviation demonstrated a certain degree of anti-risk capability and recovery momentum.

China Airlines is the leading airline of domestic regional airlines. According to the 2020 annual report, China Airlines had a net profit of 613 million yuan last year, a year-on-year increase of 22.03%. The passenger gross profit margin increased from 5.87% in the first half of last year to 12.93%, almost returning to the level at the end of 2019. In October last year, China Airlines signed an agreement with COMAC to purchase and receive a total of 100 ARJ21 series and C919 series aircraft from COMAC. The delivery will be completed within ten years from 2020. Half of them are ARJ21 series for branch lines.

China Eastern Airlines, Air China and China Southern Airlines are also working on branch lines to meet customer needs by expanding branch lines. The airline’s investment in the branch line is also optimistic about its future. After all, the construction speed of the branch line airport is accelerating.

According to the National Civil Transportation Airport Layout Plan of the National Development and Reform Commission, it is estimated that by 2025, there will be 370 civil transportation airports nationwide. Among them, regional airports accounted for a large proportion.

Among the first eight airlines, small and medium-sized airlines such as Lucky Air and Chengdu Airlines mentioned the opportunities brought by Tianfu International Airport to build an operation mode of “integration of branch and branch”.

“Focus on building a backbone route network around the Pearl River Delta and the Yangtze River Delta Economic Belt, increasing interaction with the branch network in Yunnan Province and the southwestern region, opening up characteristic routes from Chengdu to Tibet on high plateaus, optimizing the connection of flights in the passenger source market, and building a’main and branch combination “.” A relevant person from Lucky Air told reporters.

“The branch line is definitely also the focus of our future development. In the future, we will still combine the’main and branch’.” Xiao Liang, deputy general manager of China Eastern Airlines Sichuan Branch, told reporters that China Eastern Airlines has opened 48 domestic direct flights in Chengdu. Covering major cities in China, opening 21 other regional airports in Sichuan. He stated that with the official opening of Tianfu International Airport, China Eastern Airlines will further increase strategic resource investment, actively optimize the strategic structure, strengthen, deepen, expand, and do a good job in Chengdu, an important market, so as to achieve both passenger and cargo transportation. A new pattern of coordinated and efficient operation between the two fields.

Industry insider Cheng Jiajun suggested in “Opportunities and Challenges in Chengdu’s “One City, Two Markets”” that airlines should seize the opportunity and focus on the expansion of branch lines in Sichuan Province. “Shuangliu International Airport is closer to the city and is the first choice for business travelers. Therefore, the transportation capacity at the golden hour must be biased towards Shuangliu International Airport.”

Industrial chain brings incremental demand

On the other hand, as the “dual airports” expand the aviation “platform”, the demand for subdivided industrial chains will gradually increase.

The aircraft industry chain includes pre-design and R&D, raw material supply, component manufacturing, complete aircraft assembly manufacturing, and after-sales maintenance. In the fields of raw materials, parts manufacturing, and inspection and maintenance, there are quite a few private enterprises involved, and the market is relatively open.

“With the operation of the two airports, more and more flights, technical support personnel will definitely increase.” Li Biao, chairman of Haite High-tech, said that Chengdu has become a gathering place for the aviation industry and aviation technology industry, and government departments can issue corresponding policies. , To better promote the aviation technology industry to become bigger and stronger locally and attract some capable companies to invest.

Li Biao added that for Haite High-tech, it is very concerned about the industrial opportunities brought by Chengdu Tianfu International Airport after it is put into operation, and will actively participate in matching incremental demand.

Plane parked on the tarmac of Tianfu International Airport

Picture source: every photo by reporter Cao Bingfan

On the other hand, Tianfu International Airport has opened up a new aviation channel connecting the world, and through this air corridor, it will bring connections and upgrades to Sichuan’s industries. Many enterprises in Sichuan participate in the globalization of industrial division of labor, lead the international supply chain, and realize the high-end integration of the industrial chain, value chain and supply chain. This is the huge potential of the “double airport” in the future. In this context, more frequent commercial trade and exchanges will test the overall integrated shipping service system of the airport.

Sichuan Aircraft Maintenance Engineering Co., Ltd. and Sichuan Airlines Crete Engineering Technology Co., Ltd., the former is mainly engaged in maintenance of the whole aircraft, and the latter is mainly responsible for the maintenance of accessories. It is worth mentioning that Sichuan Aircraft Maintenance Engineering Co., Ltd. will set up a new MRO base at Tianfu International Airport. Sichuan Aircraft Maintenance Engineering Co., Ltd. and Sichuan Airlines Crete Engineering Technology Co., Ltd. are jointly held by Haite High-tech and Sichuan Airlines.

In addition, there will be airlines that will build an operating base at Tianfu International Airport.

A person from Chengdu Airlines told reporters that the company signed a “Strategic Cooperation Agreement” and negotiated a “Strategic Investment Agreement” with the Management Committee of Chengdu Eastern New District, and plans to build an operating base and comprehensive support project at Tianfu International Airport.

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