Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals (Hactl) has reported a 50 per cent drop in the shipment of the king of fruits - durians - by air in April and May compared to the corresponding period last year. Hactl managing director Anthony Charter said the downturn was a result of more durians being transported by sea. Despite this, Hactl reported handling 641,360 tonnes of air cargo for the first five months of this year, representing a 16.8 per cent rise over the same period last year. In May, more than 138,652 tonnes of air cargo passed through Kai Tak airport. Exports increased by 12 per cent to 60,527 tonnes, imports were up 10.8 per cent to 62,112 tonnes and transshipments jumped 26 per cent to 16,013 tonnes. Mr Charter said this year's steady growth figures pointed to a rise in volume over the next few months. 'The increases have been evenly distributed with imports, exports and transshipments all registering strong and sustained gains in both April and May,' he said. 'We are confident that the current year will be a good one for us and are optimistic and on course to top last year's throughput record.' Hactl's mishandling rate in May was six consignments in 229,923 inbound and outbound shipments on 13,706 flights.