Asia Pacific cargo down 17.4 per cent in June

27 / 07 / 2009

FIGURES from the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) show that its member airlines carried 17.4 per cent less cargo in June than in the same month last year.

Coupled with a 15.4 per cent reduction in cargo capacity, the average international cargo load factor for the month fell 1.6 per cent to 66.8 per cent.

Andrew Herdman, AAPA’s director general, said, “The air cargo market remains depressed as a result of the sharp slowdown in international trade. For the first half of 2009, AAPA international freight traffic registered a 22.3 per cent decline in FTK [freight tonne kilometres] terms.

“However, unlike the passenger business, there has been a slow but steady recovery in air cargo demand from the lows seen at the end of 2008, and we are hopeful that this trend will continue in the second half of the year.

“Airlines have been responding to the sharp falls in demand by progressively reducing capacity, although not quickly enough to prevent falls in average load factors,” he added.

“Efforts to stimulate demand through highly competitive fares and discounted travel packages are having some effect, but lower yields are further undermining revenues. A number of carriers have taken steps to strengthen their balance sheets through a variety of new financing initiatives, in order to ride out the prolonged economic storm.”