Cathay Pacific Airways plans to launch services to Moscow in an effort to capitalise on visa-free entry for Russians into Hong Kong.

The Oneworld carrier says it has applied for regulatory approval to operate on the Hong Kong-Moscow route and plans to have a thrice-weekly service using Airbus A340-300s.

It already codeshares on Aeroflot's service which Flightglobal's ACAS says is a four-times weekly Boeing 767-300 service.

There are also a number of freighter flights each week on the route.

Cathay chief executive, Tony Tyler, says he anticipates Cathay's new service will appeal to business and leisure travellers.

"Travel between the two cities is showing substantial growth thanks in no small part to the visa-free access enjoyed by passport holders of Hong Kong and Russia," he says.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news