Wuhan-London direct flight lands new projects
The ceremony for the inaugural Wuhan-London direct flight and commercial signing was held at Tianhe International Airport ( TIA) Terminal 3on May 30.
Sun Xianzhong, a tour guide at local travel agency Favor Tour, was the first passenger to check in for the Wuhan-London flight. He said that previously in order to go to London from Wuhan he and his team would have to transfer at airports in Hong Kong, Guangzhou, or Beijing. This added four hours to their journey and left them feeling very tired. Now, the direct flight, which takes only 11 and a half hours, makes the whole journey much easier. As the plane lands at 18: 45 local time, he can go to the hotel early in the evening and get a good night's sleep.
According to staff at China Southern Airlines, Wuhan's unique geographical advantage makes it a popular stopover among passengers from other cities in China. It is estimated that this type of passenger accounts for 1/3of the passenger flow. Even in some cities where there are direct flights, many travelers still prefer to transfer in Wuhan after considering the cost and convenience.
At the event, there were 10 projects signed between Wuhan and the U.K. with a total amount of approximately USD 66 million. One project was signed with the British-Chinese Trade Association's U.K. headquarters, one international organization was introduced, a cargo shipping route was opened, and one foreign-funded industrial project was utilized. Also, along with one automotive design and cooperation project, four commodity trades and one service trade were signed.
In addition, Qu Guangji, general manager of China Southern Airlines Hubei Branch, the Standard Chartered Bank Wuhan Branch, and Jones Lang of LaSalle
Hubei Branch were hired as the "Wuhan Investment Promotion Ambassadors."
The Municipal Bureau of Commerce (Merchants Bureau) stated that the direct flight not only establishes a physical connection between Wuhan and U.K., but also acts as an important window and springboard for Wuhan to make itself known to the world. It will be a strong driving force in the rapid development of the city's economy. Wuhan Asia Europe Logistics Co., Ltd. has signed a contract with Shanghai Air Sea Transport Inc. to carry out the Wuhan-London freight service business, flying three times a week. International routes, the most convenient way for Wuhan to open up to and integrate into the outside world, are becoming a magic key" for attracting investment.
Several cooperation agreements were signed between some famous British brands in the fields of food and beverages, daily necessities, and fashion apparel and some famous companies in Hubei Province, such as Wushang Group, Zhongbai Group and Zhongshang Group. Wuhan citizens will enjoy more 'British-style' products. Headquartered in London, Bakkavor Group is an international food manufacturing company specializing in freshly-prepared foods. It plans to invest in a fresh food production base in Wuhan. Thoughtworks signed a contract with Manchester Airports Group to export intelligent chat bot software. Wuhan Industrial Technology Research Institute of Geo-Resources and Environment Co., LTD and MIRA (Motor Industry Research Association) signed a contract for further cooperator in areas like low-emissions cars, self-driving cars, intelligent transportation, and vehicle testing. Ruiyin Clothes Co., Ltd., a private enterprise in Wuhan, and Dickies of U.K. signed a contract for the purchase and sale of overalls.
Martin Walley, Vice Consul General of the British Consulate-General Wuhan posing with Changjiang Weekly