Preliminary traffic figures for the month of January released by the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) showed continued steady growth in air cargo demand.
Import-export activity leading up to the Lunar New Year festive period contributed to a 7.0 per cent increase in international air cargo demand, as measured in FTK. The average international freight load factor continued to strengthen, recording a 1.3 percentage point increase to 61.8 per cent on a 4.8 per cent increase in offered freight capacity.
Commenting on the results, Andrew Herdman, AAPA director general said, “The year began on a positive note for Asian carriers, with air passenger demand posting a solid increase above the healthy volumes achieved in January last year. Air freight markets continued to see good growth, reflecting sustained consumer demand from North America and Europe for Asia-manufactured goods.”
Looking ahead, Herdman concluded, “The demand outlook appears positive for the coming year, on expectations of further growth in the global economy, whilst lower oil prices should help to keep air travel affordable. Nevertheless, Asian carriers continue to face challenges marked by a competitive operating environment and the need to carefully monitor capacity in line with evolving market conditions.”