THE Chinese operated Hainan Airlines is to start the first direct flights from Oslo to Beijing next spring in a move that will boost Norway’s seafood market in China.
Norway is looking to increase its salmon exports to China’s burgeoning middle classes and the Norwegian Seafood Council predicted in the summer that the volume of trade would triple in the second half of 2018.
Martin Langaas, freight director of Avinor, which operates most on Norway’s airports, said: ‘The direct flight to China will be very positive for the export of fresh Norwegian seafood to the fast growing Chinese market.
‘Fresh fish have short shelf life, and faster shipping time will ensure the quality of the goods. The route is expected to transport seafood to an annual value of NOK 200 million.’
After the lifting of a ban on Norwegian salmon, imposed in 2015, exports reached 7,000 tonnes in the first six months of this year.
Chinese total salmon consumption could climb to 100,000 tonnes this year and 240,000 tonnes in 2025, the Seafood Council’s China director, Sigmund Bjoergo, said in July.
Based on the Seafood Council estimates, China would consume 12 per cent of global salmon production by 2025, up from four per cent in 2017.
There will be three flights a week between Oslo and Beijing, according to a report this morning in Norway Today.
Hainan Airlines launched direct flights from Edinburgh to Beijing in June, facilitating the export of Scottish salmon from companies including Marine Harvest to the Chinese market.
Picture: Hainan Airlines launched its direct flights from Edinburgh to Beijing in June