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Intercity drone delivery service launched in Bay Area

By ZHOU MO | CHINA DAILY | Updated: 2024-04-17 09:37
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Officials and industry players say a new logistics route using drones to transport goods between Shenzhen and Zhongshan that was launched last week will boost development in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area.

The route, which operates between Shenzhen's Nanshan district and the town of Xiaolan in Zhongshan, spans over 70 kilometers, with a flight time of around 45 minutes.

The drone's manufacturer, Phoenix Wings, said the unmanned aerial vehicle can carry up to 20 kilograms. With an average cruising speed of 108 kilometers per hour, it can be used in areas such as emergency support, intercity fast delivery and offshore logistics.

"The launch of the first intercity low-altitude logistics route in the Bay Area will significantly enhance delivery efficiency between Zhongshan and Shenzhen, and reduce logistics costs," said Cao Fuquan, the head of Zhongshan's transport bureau.

"It will inject fresh vitality into the development of enterprises and promote deeper economic and social integration between the two cities, thereby achieving a win-win situation."

The new service comes as the manufacturing, flight operation and services of manned and unmanned aerial vehicles gain steam in China.

According to CCID Consulting, a subsidiary of the China Center for Information Industry Development, the low-altitude economy market in China reached 505 billion yuan ($70 billion) last year, up 33.8 percent year-on-year. It is projected to hit one trillion yuan by 2026.

The number of registered drones in China increased by 32.2 percent last year to 1.27 million, and their flight time hit 23.1 million hours, up 11.8 percent year-on-year, said Han Jun, deputy administrator of the Civil Aviation Administration of China.

Shenzhen, known as China's tech hub, started implementing regulations on Feb 1 to promote industries in the field. They were the first such local regulations implemented in China.

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