In the early 1980s, the Hong Kong Government already foresaw the incapability of the existing airport and container port to keep up with the growth of Hong Kong. The blueprints for the new airport and container port had already been drawn. However, the government decided to postpone the plan owing to the uncertainty of Hong Kong's future.
The government of People's Republic of China (PRC) cast a great concern in the project for fear that the British would withdraw the monetary reserve of Hong Kong to Britain before the reunification with China 1997. There was a lengthy series of conferences on the matter. Some Chinese officials also urged a downscaling of the project such as building one runway at the airport instead of two.