Preliminary figures for the month of July released by the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) provide further evidence of the strength of the recovery in both passenger and freight markets, with volumes surpassing pre-recession levels.
Asia-Pacific based airlines carried a record 17.2 million international passengers in July, 20.4% up from the same month last year, boosted by particularly strong demand on busy regional routes. Overall international passenger traffic carried by Asia-Pacific airlines, measured in revenue passenger kilometres (RPK) terms, grew by 13.6%, surpassing highs achieved prior to the downturn.
For Asia-Pacific airlines, international air cargo demand measured in freight tonne kilometres (FTK) grew by 27.7% in July compared to the same month last year, underpinned by strong trade flows. Even with a 20.3% increase in freight capacity, the average international cargo load factor climbed by 4.2 percentage points to 71.6%.
AAPA director general, Andrew Herdman, says: “During the first seven months of the year, Asia-Pacific based airlines saw a 15.6% increase in the number of international passengers carried, reflecting growing consumer confidence across the Asia Pacific region. Commercial activity has also picked up strongly, leading to a rebound in premium passenger traffic on both regional and long haul routes. At the same time, international air cargo demand has recorded 33.7% growth in traffic for the first seven months of the year.”