Export/Import Updates!
July 26, 2021

Top Cargo Handling China Airports

China has been the global factory for decades now. Many businesses have resorted to a China+1 strategy due to the US-China trade war, but it still remains the major sourcing hub globally. This is because its low cost and large scale of manufacturing cannot be matched by any other Southeast Asian nation immediately.

In this blog, we have compiled a list of the top cargo handling airports in China, along with key details and information relevant to businesses that trade with China. In the meanwhile, if you need some guidance on whether to use air freight or ocean freight to transport your goods, our blog Air or Ocean Freight: Which Mode of Cargo Transportation is Best for Your Trade? will help shed some light for you.  

Shanghai Pudong International Airport  

Hong Kong International Airport  

Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport  

Beijing Capital International Airport  

Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport  

Shenzhen Baoan International Airport  

Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport  

Xiamen Gaoqi International Airport  

Fuzhou Changle International Airport  

Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport  

Kunming Changshui International Airport

Xi’an Xianyang International Airport  

Shanghai Pudong International Airport

Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG) in Pudong, 30 km from the city centre, is a major aviation hub of East Asia and the main international airport serving the city of Shanghai.  

Cargo volumes and commodities

PVG is the biggest air cargo gateway for China and the third busiest airport in the world by cargo volume. It handled 3.63 million Metric Tonnes (MT) of cargo in 2019 but in 2020, air freight volumes dwindled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.  

The situation improved in March 2021, during which, even though the volume was 3 percent lower than that in March 2019, it was 29 percent higher than the outlier month of March 2020.  

Top exports include refined petroleum, cotton, plywood, petroleum gas and tea, while top imports include integrated circuits/micro assemblies, crude oil, iron ores, and concentrates.

Cargo airline carriers and other freight service providers

The major airlines that provide cargo services at PVG include Emirates, China Airlines, China Southern, China Cargo Airlines, Nippon Cargo, Korean Air Lines, Silkway West and ASL.  

Forwarding companies like DHL Aviation, FedEx Express, Air China Cargo, Lufthansa Cargo, and UPS Airlines operate at PVG. Seahog Logistics provides customs clearance services at the airport.  

Nearest sea port and airport

PVG is located at a distance of 63 km from the Port of Shanghai, a major trade hub in Asia. The goods moving through it represent one-fourth of the value of China’s foreign trade.

Shanghai’s Hongqiao International Airport (SHA) is located barely 11.92 km away from PVG.

Terminals

Terminal 1 opened in 1999 and features a 4,000m runway and a cargo hub. Terminal 2 opened in 2008 with a third runway and is capable of handling over 60 million passengers and 3.62 million MT of cargo annually.  

Future Expansion  

Phase 4 of construction is underway and includes the Pudong Comprehensive Transportation Hub, a cargo collection and distribution system for the modern shipping industry, construction of metro lines and expansion of the S4 Expressway.  

Get end to end support with/ Get the best rates for your shipments to and from China, with Cogoport. Sign Up Today.  

Get the best air freight rates to and from China, with Cogoport

Hong Kong International Airport

Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) on the island of Chek Lap Kok, is the main airport in Hong Kong. It is an international gateway and transhipment centre for several destinations in China and many Asian nations. Operated by the Airport Authority Hong Kong, it is one of Asia’s top cargo handling hubs.

Cargo volumes and commodities

HKG handled 4.46 million MT of air cargo in 2020, down by 7.1 percent as compared with the 4.8 million MT of cargo it handled in 2019.  

Major commodities imported include integrated circuits, broadcasting equipment, computers, telephones, and gold. Major commodities exported include diamonds, scrap copper, silver, and precious stones.

Cargo airline carriers and other freight service providers

The airport is the hub for Oneworld alliance airlines, Hong Kong Airlines, HK Express, Air Hong Kong, China Airlines and China Eastern Airlines. It is also one of the Asia-Pacific cargo hubs for UPS Airlines. Singapore Airlines and Ethiopian Airlines use the airport as a stopover.

Nearest sea port and other airports

Victoria Harbour, which houses most of the ports of Hong Kong and has around 220,000 ships pass through each year, is at a distance of 26.5km from HKG.  Airports near HKG are Macau airport (49km), Zhuhai airport (57km), Huizhou airport (90km), and Guangzhou airport (126km).

Terminals

Terminal 1, with 570,000 m2 area, is one of the largest terminals in the world, and Terminal 2 has an area of 140,000 m2.  

Future expansion

The Airport Authority Hong Kong (AAHK) has come up with the Master Plan 2030, by which it has proposed to turn the airport into a three-runway system (3RS) from the current two-runway system. Construction work began in August 2016 and is expected to be completed by 2022.

Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport

Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport (TPE), Taiwan's largest airport, is 40 km away from Taipei in Dayuan District. Operated by the Taoyuan International Airport Corporation, it is a vital regional cargo transhipment centre and a gateway for destinations in Asia.  

Cargo volumes and commodities

As per ACI, TPE ranked as the world’s fourth-busiest airport in terms of international freight handled in 2020, amid the Covid-19 pandemic. The airport handled a record 2.34 million MT of international air freight in 2020.  

Major commodities imported through the airport include oil/petroleum, natural gas, coal, steel, computers, and wireless communication equipment. Major export commodities include semiconductors, petrochemicals, automobile/auto parts, ships, flat displays, steel, electronics, and plastics.

Terminals

Terminal 1 features a five-storey building with an area of 169,500 m2 for passengers. Terminal 2, with an area of 18,000 m2 was opened to reduce heavy congestion on the aging Terminal 1. Terminal 3 is currently under construction.  

Nearest airport

Taipei Songshan Airport is at a distance of 27km.  

Future expansion

The airport is currently undergoing major facility expansions that include upgrading the North runway to Category III and improving surface conditions, after which it will be able to allow regular A380 operations. Also underway are Terminal 3, the satellite terminal, and a third runway.  

Beijing Capital International Airport

Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) is 32 km from the Chinese capital city. It is one of the two leading airports serving the city. Operated by Beijing Capital International Airport Company Limited, the airport features the largest terminal in the world.

Cargo volumes and commodities

According to the Civil Aviation Administration of China sources, the air freight throughput at the airport in March 2021 was at 115,707 MT, an increase from 84,305 MT in February 2021. As per another source, for the first four months of 2021, cargo throughput was recorded at 429,280 MT, an increase of approximately 8.3 percent compared with the same period in 2020.

Major imported commodities include Iron Ore, American soybeans, and natural gas and the major commodities for export are medical goods, electronics, and textiles.  

Cargo airline carriers

Air France Cargo, DHL Aviation, Lufthansa Cargo, Qatar Airways Cargo, as well as UPS Airlines operate through here.

Nearest airport

Beijing Daxing International Airport is at a distance of 67km, and 90 minutes by road.

China's Top Cargo Handling Airports & Their Code

Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport

Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport (CAN), 33.9 km away from Guangzhou City, is one of the three busiest airports in China.  

Cargo volumes

It is the third largest airport in China in terms of cargo movement. The air freight handled by the airport in 2019 was 1.92 million MT.

Cargo Airline Carriers

Major carriers at the airport include Air France Cargo, Korean Air Cargo, Lufthansa Cargo, and UPS. The airport is also a hub for FedEx Asia Pacific.

Nearest seaport and airport

Port of Guangzhou Huangpu is at a distance of 42.6 km, and 1 hour 33 minutes away by road. Foshan Shadi Airport is 57.6 km away.  

Terminals

Terminal 1 is the main terminal with two concourses and Terminal 2 is one of the largest terminals in the world.  

Future Expansion

The current expansion project at the airport, with an investment of $7.98B, will see it add a fourth and fifth runway. It will also include the addition of a third passenger terminal. It is scheduled to be finished by 2022.

Shenzhen Baoan International Airport

Shenzhen Bao'an International Airport (SZX) is 32 km away from the city centre in Bao'an District. The airport mainly serves the Shenzhen and Guangdong provinces. It is one of the three largest airport hubs serving the Pearl River Delta.  

Cargo Volumes

SZX handled a total of 1.39 million MT of cargo in 2020. For the whole year, a total of 2,900 cargo flights to 46 countries were handled.  

Nearby airport

Hong Kong International Airport is at a distance of 38.1 km.

Major cargo carriers

It is a hub for cargo airline SF Airlines, China Southern Airlines and Hainan Airlines, as well as for UPS in Asia and the Pacific. Forwarding companies such as China Airlines Cargo, China Cargo Airlines as well as FedEx Express operate at SZX.  

Future Expansion

Construction of a new 400,000 m² terminal 4 building has been proposed and the design contract has been awarded to Aecom joint venture (JV).  

Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport

Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport (HGH), 27 km away from downtown Hangzhou, is the principal airport serving Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang Province in China. It offers services to all destinations in China and international destinations include the East and Southeast Asia, and points of Africa, Europe, and South Asia.  

Major Airline Carriers

The airport is hub for Air China Cargo, China Southern Cargo, Hong Kong Airlines, and SF Airlines.

Nearby Airports

Ningbo Lishe (136.2 km), Shanghai Hongqiao (151.1 km), Shanghai Pudong (183.8 km) and Nanjing (201.8 km).

Terminals

It contains two terminals, Terminal A for global and local air freight and Terminal B for domestic flights.

Cargo handled

The airport has reported a 20.5 percent Year on Year (YOY) increase in cargo volumes, with 92,442.12 MT in the first 11 months of 2020.  

Future Expansion

An International cargo terminal and expansion project at the airport began in December 2020. The cargo terminal building will feature a three storey landside and a one storey airside. The project is expected to be completed with an investment of $367.7B.

Xiamen Gaoqi International Airport

Xiamen Gaoqi International Airport (XMN) is situated on the north side of Xiamen Island in China. It is the main airport serving Xiamen in Fujian Province and one of the top cargo handling airports in China.

Cargo volumes and import export facilities

XMN is ranked as the 13th busiest airport in China and handled air freight of 330,511.6 MT in 2019. It features two 48 m² refrigerator facilities for export commodities, and three refrigerator facilities with 32m², 45m², and 56m² for import commodities. It also has facilities to transport valuables goods (VAL), and dangerous goods (D/G) under the special cargo category.

Major cargo airline carriers

Major airlines operating cargo flights to and from XMN include ANA Cargo, Cargolux, Cathay Pacific Cargo, China Cargo Airlines, Hong Kong Airlines Cargo, Korean Air Cargo, Martinair Cargo, Singapore Airlines Cargo and Yangtze River Express.

Terminals

Xiamen Airport currently operates two terminals, Terminals 3 and 4, for domestic and international flights.  

Nearby Seaport and other Airport

The Port of Xiamen is 45.6 km away, and Fuzhou Changle International Airport is 218 km away.

Fuzhou Changle International Airport

Fuzhou Changle International Airport (FOC) is 50 km away from Fuzhou's city centre and positioned adjacent to the shore of the Taiwan Strait in Changle district.  

Cargo volumes

FOC is ranked as the 28th busiest airport in China in 2019. According to CAAC East China Regional Administration, the airport’s air cargo recorded 11,363.39 MT by October 2020, an improvement of 12.4 percent from that in the previous year.  

Major Cargo Carrier Airlines

FOC is a major hub for Fuzhou Airlines, XiamenAir, and China Postal Airlines. It also includes cargo carriers Hong Kong Dragon Airlines Ltd., Air China, Shandong Airlines, China Eastern Airlines, Hainan Airlines, Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd, Shanghai Airlines, and Shenzhen Airlines.  

Nearest airports

Quanzhou Jinjiang Airport is at a distance of 166 km, while Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport is at a distance of 183 km.

Future Expansion

The second phase of expansion will see a second runway with a length of 3,600 meters and a width of 45 meters, a T2 terminal of 255,000 m2, and a 60-seat apron. It will also include construction of transportation centre of 80,000 m2 and a freight station of 25,000m2. The goal is to make it an urban passenger and cargo distribution hub that integrates multiple transportation modes such as aviation, railway, and subway.

Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport

Chengdu Shuangliu (CTU), at a 16 km distance from Chengdu, is the main airport serving the capital of the Sichuan province, an important aviation hub in Western China, and the fourth busiest airport in China.  

Cargo Carrier Airlines

This is the main hub and headquarters for Sichuan Airlines and Chengdu Airlines. China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines, Shenzhen Airlines, Lucky Air and Tibet Airlines also have bases at Chengdu Shuangliu.  

Nearby Airport

Chengdu Tianfu Airport is 91.3 km away.  

Air traffic and cargo handling

The airport has handled 671,903.9 MT of cargo in 2019.    

Kunming Changshui International Airport

Kunming Changshui International Airport (KMG), located 24.5 km away from the city centre, is in a mountainous area, 2,100m above sea level. The airport mainly serves the capital of Yunnan Province in China and is one of the largest national gateway hubs of China.

Cargo volumes

KMG is the sixth busiest airport in China, and handled 415,776.3 MT of air freight in 2019. It largely deals with air freight related to automobiles because Kunming has well-developed transport links with major Chinese cities and neighbouring Southeast Asian countries.

Major Cargo Airlines

As a gateway to Southeast and South Asia, KMG is a hub for China Eastern Airlines, Kunming Airlines, Lucky Air, Sichuan Airlines and Ruili Airlines.  

Nearest Airport

Zhaotong Airport (ZAT) is at a distance of 274.8 km.

Terminal

KMGs main terminal building has a 548,300 m2 area, and is the second largest terminal in China. It has a total number of 88 gates.

Xi’an Xianyang International Airport

Xi'an Xianyang International Airport (XIY), 26.6 km away from Xi’an city in Shaanxi province, is the second largest airport in Northern China. It mainly serves Xi’an and Guanzhong area.  

Cargo volumes and commodities

It is the seventh busiest airport in China and handled 381,869.6 MT of air freight in 2019. It largely exports e-commerce parcels purchased from the Yangtze River Delta and the Pearl River Delta and imports mainly special oils, linseeds, imported express parcels and meat products to the airport.

Major Cargo Carrier Airlines

XIY caters to cargo carriers Shenzhen Airlines, Asiana Airlines, Xiamen Airlines, Deer Jet, Air China, Hong Kong Express Airways, Shandong Airlines, Japan Airlines, China Eastern Airlines, Korean Air, Hainan Airlines, Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd, Sichuan Airlines, Shanghai Airlines, and China Southern Airlines. China West Airport Group's Air Logistics Co. Ltd, with 37 all-cargo routes (including 18 international routes), also operates from here.

Nearby Airport

Qingyang Airport is 185 km away.  

Future Expansion

The China West Airport Group has begun a $6.8B project to expand the Xi’an Xianyang International Airport to add two terminals, three runways, a 350,000 m2 ground transportation centre, and an integrated metro station. It will also increase cargo capacity to 907,184.74 MT.

Nearby Trade Zone

Xi’an International Trade and Logistics Park is spread over a 26,430,000 m2 area. It is located at a transportation network and geographically advantageous position, barely 28 km away from XIY.  

For global traders that are exploring using air freight as a transport mode, check out our comprehensive guide to air freight. It covers everything that importers and exporters need to know about this shipping mode.  

Editorial Team
Editorial Team
Customer success manager
Tea cup with steam illustration
JOIN US FOR CHAI

Signup & get articles in your inbox

Signup to Cogoport. Get trade new & updates, and get assistance with booking international shipments online!

More articles

Introducing the Cogoport Partner Program

Introducing the Cogoport Partner Program

Keeping our partners, small businesses and agents in mind, we have launched the Cogoport Partner Program. Join the program to get access to the Cogoport platform to book shipments for your clients.

Foreign Trade Policy 2021-2026: Expectations For The Import-Export Sector

Foreign Trade Policy 2021-2026: Expectations For The Import-Export Sector

Know about India's Foreign Trade Policy. The Highs & Lows of FTP 2015-2020. What are the expectations from FTP 2021-2026? Is the new FTP India's road to $5 Trillion by 2025?

China Emerges As India’s Top Trading Partner In 2020 Amidst Diplomatic Rifts

China Emerges As India’s Top Trading Partner In 2020 Amidst Diplomatic Rifts

Know about the impact of India-China Conflicts, trade Statistics and the government Measures to withdraw dependence on Chinese products. 

Ocean & Air Freight Outlook: 8 June, 2021

Ocean & Air Freight Outlook: 8 June, 2021

Get all the news and relevant updates on cargo volumes and booking availability, near-term forecasts of freight rates, and freight rate trends for in our Ocean & Air Freight Outlook 8 June, 2021 edition.

Foreign Trade Agreements Can Boost India’s Exports, If Done Right

Foreign Trade Agreements Can Boost India’s Exports, If Done Right

Know about Foreign Trade Agreements, its importance, benefits and how to claim FTA benefits. Also learn about what India is doing to strengthen its FTAs.

Supply Chain Challenges: How Businesses Can Adapt For A Covid-19 World

Supply Chain Challenges: How Businesses Can Adapt For A Covid-19 World

Get full details about what a supply chain is, and how is it important. Know how covid-19 has impacted supply chain and what can you do to manage and adapt.

Export/Import Updates!

Heading

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

Sara Smith
Customer success manager

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

Heading

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Resources

No items found.