Slowdown for Asian airlines

Preliminary September traffic figures from the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) showed a continuing divergence between the cargo and passenger business. The latter remains strong but airfreight remains weak, says AAPA.
Air cargo markets remained subdued, with demand in freight tonne kilometre (FTK) terms only matching the same month last year. Combined with a 2.3% increase in offered freight capacity, average international freight load factors fell by 1.5% to 62.7% for the month.
AAPA director general, Andrew Herdman, blamed the slowdown in world trade. He added: “The region’s carriers experienced a 1.1% year-on-year decline in air cargo demand during the third quarter of 2015, after registering a 4.5% increase during the first half of the year. As a result, air cargo growth for the first nine months narrowed to 2.6% compared to the same period last year."
Despite a 7.4% increase in passenger kilometres, the operating environment for Asian airlines remains challenging, he said with slowing economic growth in emerging markets and exchange rate volatility. Overall, Asia Pacific airlines’ profitability is showing modest improvement in an intensely competitive market, Herdman added.

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