figures from the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) for the month of January
2018 show continued growth in
international air passenger demand, whilst international air cargo
markets also enjoyed a strong start to the year.
A combined total
of 29.5 million international passengers were carried by the
region's airlines in January, 2.4% more than the same month last
year when volumes were boosted by an increase in travelers during
the Chinese New Year festive period, which occurred a month
In revenue passenger kilometres (RPK), demand climbed
3.4% higher, whilst available seat capacity expanded by 5.1%,
resulting in a 1.4 percentage point decline in the average
international passenger load factor to 80.5% for the month.
Global trade activity remained robust at the start of 2018, with
firm demand for consumer, intermediate and investment goods across
major economies lending support to air cargo markets. Accordingly,
international air cargo demand in freight tonne kilometre (FTK)
terms recorded a 9.4% year-on-year growth in January. After
accounting for a 5.4% expansion in offered freight capacity, the
average international freight load factor of 60.8% was 2.2
percentage points higher than the same month last year.
AAPA Director General said, "The year has started on a positive
note, with growth in both passenger and cargo sectors. Overall,
international air passenger demand remains encouraging, having
registered continued growth in numbers, with the widespread
availability of affordable air fares and increasing network
connections providing more options for travelers. Meanwhile, the
on-going strength in the global economy has continued to benefit
the air cargo business for Asian carriers, particularly as major
manufacturing hubs are located in the region."
Mr. Herdman said, "Growth prospects look positive, with
elevated levels of business and consumer confidence boosting
aviation markets in the coming months. Whilst Asian airlines face
persistently challenging market conditions due to stiff
competition and rising costs, carriers continue to strive for
further improvements through the launch of new routes and
continued investment in new levels of passenger comfort."
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