Asian carriers see precipitous 12% Feb cargo decline

Freight load factors for the region's carriers remained under pressure, with the average international freight load factor registering a 8.6 percentage point decline to 56.8 per cent.


AAPA Association of Asia Pacific Airlines


International air cargo demand continues to suffer from the weakness in global trade volumes, as well as the Lunar New Year seasonal slowdown in factory operations in the region, according to the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA). This made for distinctly gloomy cargo figures in February, with a 12.1 per cent decline (year-on-year) in air cargo demand as measured in freight tonne kilometre (FTK) terms for the month.

Freight load factors for the region’s carriers remained under pressure, with the average international freight load factor registering a 8.6 percentage point decline to 56.8 per cent, after accounting for a 1.3 per cent expansion in offered freight capacity.

Passenger numbers meanwhile, continue their steady growth, with the region’s airlines carring 23.7 million international passengers in  February, a solid 8.2 per cent increase and a 9.5 per cent surge in revenue passenger kilometre (RPK) terms, compared to the same month last year.

Commenting on the results, Andrew Herdman, AAPA director general said: “The solid growth trend in passenger volumes seen throughout last year has been maintained, with Asian carriers reporting 9.3 per cent growth in the number of international passengers carried in the first two months of 2016. However, air cargo markets are showing further declines, reflecting the slowdown in global trade and raising some deeper concerns about the future outlook for the wider global economy.”