|LONDON, Nov.8,2017-- A call was made Monday for priority to be given to more direct airlinks between Britain's northern England and China.
It follows new research which shows how direct flights between Beijing and Manchester have delivered significant benefits to the north.
The study showed that since 2015, trade and tourism between Britain's the North and China has boomed thanks to the direct flight service.
The report has called for the prioritization of further direct links to China and other key growth markets to help drive Northern prosperity and balance the British economy.
The study "The China Dividend: One Year On" by economic consultants Steer Davies Gleeve is the most comprehensive analysis ever undertaken into the economic and social impact of a brand new direct, long haul route between two countries.
It revealed the Manchester-Beijing air route, operated by Hainan Airlines has driven a significant increase in exports, inward investment, and international student numbers into the north.
It also delivered a substantial increase in inbound tourists to the north, with many lured by the region's natural and historic attractions, luxury shopping sites and Premier League football teams.
The benefits are predicted by researchers to grow substantially in the years ahead as the profile of the region increases further in Asia.
The value of goods exported from Manchester Airport to China increased by 265 percent to 262 million U.S. dollars every month.
The number of Chinese students enrolling at the University of Manchester is double the rate of other universities in Britain.
Meanwhile, since the beginning of the Beijing route, Chinese tourists contribution to the region's visitor economy has doubled to 182 million U.S. dollars.
Jake Berry MP, Minister for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth, said: "In just one year the Hainan route has brought such significant rewards to the Northern Powerhouse that I feel there is a real appetite in exploring launching airline routes from Manchester to other regions in China."