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Wednesday, October 28, 2015, 12:58

Hong Kong ATC set for 2016 overhaul

By Timothy Chui /

Hong Kong ATC set for 2016 overhaul
In a picture taken on Oct 13, 2010 Air Traffic Controllers monitor flight traffic in the control tower of Hong Kong intern ational airport. (AFP PHOTO / ED JONES)

HONG KONG - The government will be strengthening the city’s air traffic control's senior management as a long-delayed upgrade is slated for the first half of 2016.

Chief Secretary Carrie Lam told lawmakers the government has accepted and implemented a slew of recommendations to do the needful.

Lam said the Civil Aviation Department (CAD) is closely monitoring the contractor concerned to expedite works and tests, with flight check, reliability and system integration tests having turned out satisfactory so far. A second independent consultant will soon be hired to help streamline the process, at the request of the Legislative Councils’ Public Accounts Committee.

Air traffic controllers are currently being trained on the new system in anticipation of the switchover. Extensive maintenance and contingency plans have been drawn up for the current ATC system which was slated to be replaced in 2012.

Lam said: "The safety and efficacy of the new Air Traffic Control system must fulfill the highest standards and must not be compromised in any case. CAD will ensure the safe, reliable and stable operation of the new ATC system before its commissioning."

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