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Air passengers to be charged up to HK$180 to fund third runway amid legal challenges

Outbound and transit passengers will pay up to HK$180 to fund the construction of Hong Kong airport’s third runway system from August 1. Initial reclamation work for the project is scheduled to start on the same day. Meanwhile, court cases brought by those opposed to the runway are set to be heard in July.

The fee for short-haul departing passengers flying in economy class will be HK$90, while the fee for short-haul passengers in first or business class is HK$160. For long-haul passengers, the fee for economy, and first or business class tickets will be HK$160 and HK$180 respectively.

third runway

The third runway system. Photo: Airport Authority

Transit passengers will pay according to the same scheme, but the fee for short-haul transit passengers in economy class will be set at HK$70.

The Airport Authority said it expected around 70 percent of passengers departing from the Hong Kong international airport to pay an airport construction fee of HK$90 or less.

It added that the fee will remain in effect until all costs related to the third runway system project have been fully repaid, which could take until 2031. The rate will remain unchanged throughout the collection period.

Legal challenges 

The third runway system has been beset with legal challenges.

People’s Aviation Watch, an organisation opposing expensive infrastructure projects at the airport, said a judicial review to challenge the environmental impact assessment report for the runway will be heard in court this July.

Hong Kong International Airport (via WikiCommons)

Hong Kong International Airport. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

“But the Airport Authority decided to charge the fees before any verdict is made – it disregards the law,” it said in a Facebook post.

A total of five judicial review cases or appeals are being planned, according to Roy Tam Hoi-pong, an environmental protection activist and district councilor.

Air passengers to be charged up to HK$180 to fund third runway amid legal challenges