Although operating expenses were indeed driven down by lower fuel costs, falling $122.7 million for the year, yields fell at an even faster pace, down 11.6 percent. Declines to fourth-quarter yields were more pronounced, down 15.5 percent on the non-recurring demand for charter flights in 2015, which resulted from the U.S. West Coast port disruptions.
Given the increase in cargo traffic, which swelled to 6.5 billion freight tonne kilometers, rates appear to have been discounted too steeply. SIA Cargo said it will “continue to focus on higher-yielding product segments” as it moves into 2016.
Moving forward, the group says its “outlook remains cautious for air cargo amid the economic slowdown in China and ongoing uncertainty surrounding the global economy.”