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B-KOO Inspiration completes its longest flight

I am glad that Captain Hank Cheng's B-KOO Inspiration successfully completed an almost 15-hour flight across the Pacific Ocean.

When I officiated at the departure ceremony of B-KOO Inspiration at the Hong Kong International Airport in late August, Hank told me that this part of his journey would be the biggest challenge. To reserve adequate fuel for the flight, even flight engineer Gary Tat, who used to sit at the back of the plane, had to give up flying with Hank. Completion of the almost 15-hour flight by Hank on his own demonstrates not only his excellent flying skills but also his strong will. Of course, the co-ordination efforts of the whole team in Hong Kong and the United States are also indispensable.

Congratulations to Hank, Gary and their team, as well as the students who helped build this aircraft. I wish Hank continued success in the rest of his journey.

Early this year, I said in my Policy Address, "To further strengthen Hong Kong's edge as a major regional aviation hub, the Airport Authority will establish a civil aviation academy to nurture local and regional aviation management talent." In June this year, I paid a three-day visit to Toulouse and Paris with 19 Hong Kong university students. Toulouse is the home of Airbus' final assembly line. Most of the students in the delegation studied mechanical engineering and aerospace engineering, and they were particularly interested in aircraft production.

I believe it is the dream of many young Hong Kong people to take to the skies. The Government is helping them realise their flying dream.

September 19, 2016