Preliminary January traffic figures from the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) showed strong traffic volumes in both international air passenger and air cargo markets.
International air cargo demand, measured in freight tonne kilometers (FTK), grew by 4.7 percent. Offered freight capacity expanded by 3.8 percent, resulting in a 0.5 percentage-point rise in the average international freight load factor to 59.4 percent for the month.
That said, January cargo traffic is an unreliable indicator of larger trends, because year-over-year growth can be heavily impacted by the timing of the Chinese New Year holiday. So, while AAPA cargo carriers and airports reported modest y-o-y demand growth in January, the combined January/February results will be a better indicator of underlying demand.
Andrew Herdman, AAPA’s director general said, “The year started on an encouraging note for Asian carriers, with both international air passenger and cargo markets growing strongly, boosted by the timing of the Lunar New Year holidays.”
Herdman also noted that the outlook for the rest of the year looks “broadly positive, against a backdrop of renewed optimism” regarding global economic growth in terms of consumer and business confidence. However, he cautioned that air travel markets remain “intensely competitive, with margins still under pressure from the effects of rising fuel costs.”
Those interested in learning more about airfreight in 2017, should join us at Cargo Facts Asia in Shanghai, 25 – 26 April. To register, or for more information, go to CargoFactsAsia.com