Cathay Pacific leads Asian carriers in strong October for cargo

Cathay Pacific and subsidiary carrier Dragonair carried a total of 172,385 tonnes of cargo and mail in October, an increase of 5.3 percent over October 2015. The carrier’s load factor rose by 1.6 percentage points to 68.1 percent.

Capacity, measured in available cargo/mail tonne kilometers, increased by 0.6 percent, while cargo and mail revenue tonne kilometers (RTKs) increased by 3.2 percent.

The 2016 cumulative numbers through October saw tonnage carried rise by 2.2 percent against a 0.5 percent increase in capacity. Cumulative RTKs for the first ten months rose 0.4 percent.

Cathay Pacific general manager for cargo sales and marketing, Mark Sutch, said that despite a negative impact on the carrier’s forecasts during the month from typhoon disruptions, “overall cargo demand in October was fairly strong and tonnage continued to grow.” He added that, “overall exports from Europe, Asia and Mainland China were robust… rates are getting back to peak season levels. The new twice-weekly service to Portland, introduced in early November, further strengthened our US network.”

Cathay isn’t the only carrier in the region reporting the sort of numbers that substantiate cautious optimism in the sector. China Southern registered 13 percent growth over October 2015, to 555 million RTKs. The Chinese carrier’s 10 months’ performance was also solid, at 9.3 percent year-on-year (y-o-y).

Eva Air continues to scramble back from a rough couple of years, with an 8.7 percent y-o-y increase in demand in October, to 336 million FTKs. That said, the Taiwan-based carrier started the year off maintaining its downward trend in demand, with FTKs falling 13.3 percent, 20.8 percent, and 15.2 percent y-o-y over the first three months of 2016. The slow start to the year pushed the carrier’s ten-month FTK numbers 4.2 percent below 2015’s. With last year’s abysmal losses factored in, Eva Air is clawing its way back from long fall.

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