A new carrier hoping to set up in Hong Kong, Greater Bay Airlines, has applied for an air operator’s certificate.

The AOC application was submitted in July and is being processed, Hong Kong’s Civil Aviation Department says in a statement to Cirium, without giving further details.

If successful, the airline would become the city’s fifth commercial passenger airline, after Cathay PacificCathay DragonHK Express and Hong Kong Airlines.

Local newspaper the South China Morning Post reported on 10 August, citing anonymous sources, that former senior executives from the Cathay Pacific Group – including former Dragonair and Airport Authority chief Stanley Hui Hon-chun – are helping the airline “take shape”.

The report adds that mainland Chinese tycoon Bill Wong Cho-bau, who runs Donghai Airlines in Shenzhen, is behind the venture, and that the airline is looking at operating a low-cost model.

Currently, Cathay Pacific Group’s HK Express is the only budget carrier based in the city.