Hong Kong airport crop

Aviation regulations

Hong Kong is one of the regional hubs for Asia. It is connected with most urban centres in Asia and half of the world’s population within 5 hours of flight time. Currently, more than 100 airlines operate about 1,100 flights daily, linking the Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) to about 190 destinations worldwide including 50 destinations on the Chinese mainland.

Since 2006, HKIA has been ranked as world’s third busiest international passenger airport and the world’s busiest airport in terms of international cargo throughput in the world. It is one of the most regulated industries in Hong Kong.

What is the governing legislation?

Legislation Application


Civil Aviation Ordinance (Cap. 448) Primary legislation for the implementation of the Chicago Convention and its annexes for regulating air navigation and ancillary matters.


Carriage by Air Ordinance (Cap. 500) Gives effect to certain international conventions concerning international carriage by air and to make provisions relating to the non-international carriage by air and international carriage by air to which the Conventions do not apply.


Aviation Security Ordinance (Cap. 494) Prevention and suppression of acts of violence against civil air transport and for connected purposes.


Airport Authority Ordinance (Cap. 483) Provision, operation development and maintenance of an airport for civil aviation.


Civil Aviation (Aircraft Noise) Ordinance (Cap 312) and subsidiary legislation Control of emission of noise by aircraft



Air Navigation (Hong Kong) Order 1995 (Cap 448C) Civil aviation operations. This is the highest level of legislation applicable to civil aviation and is supported and supplemented by policy and procedure requirements.


Civil Aviation (Insurance) Order (Cap 448F) Insurance requirements for civil aircraft landing or taking off in Hong Kong.


Dangerous Goods (Consignment by air)(Safety) Ordinance and subsidiary legislation Control, preparation, packing, marking, labelling and offering of dangerous goods for the safe carriage by air.


Air Passenger Tax Ordinance (Cap 140) Imposition and collection of passenger departure tax


Civil Aviation (Births, Deaths and Missing Persons) Ordinance Keeping of records of birth, death, missing persons and those believed to have died in consequence of an air accident.


What international treaties and conventions are applicable to Hong Kong?

  • The Convention on International Civil Aviation, Chicago , 1944 (Chicago Convention)
  • International Air Services Transit agreement, Chicago, 1944
  • Convention on Offences and Certain Other Acts Committed on Board Aircraft, Tokyo, 1963 (Tokyo Convention)
  • Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts Against the Safety of Civil Aviation, Montreal, 1971 (Montreal Convention 1971)
  • Protocol for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts of Violence at Airports Serving International Civil Aviation, Supplementary to the Montreal Convention 1971, Montreal, 1988 (Montreal Supplementary Protocol 1988)
  • Convention on the Marking of Plastics Explosives for the Purpose of Detention, Montreal, 1991
  • Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules Relating to International Carriage by Air, Warsaw, 1929 (Warsaw Convention)
  • Protocol to Amend the Warsaw Convention, The Hague, 1955 (Hague Protocol 1955)
  • Convention, Supplementary to the Warsaw Convention, for the Unification of Certain Rules Relating to International Carriage by Air Performed by a Person Other than the Contracting Carrier, Guadalajara, 1961
  • Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules for International Carriage by Air, Montreal, 1999, (Montreal Convention 19990.

Which department is responsible for enforcement?

Primary responsibility rests with the Civil Aviation Department.

If you require more information on Aviation related regulations, please contact our team or your regular Ince & Co contact.

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