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Thai Airways International PCL : Asia-Pacific traffic up

by October 29, 2016 General

Oct. 29–Asia-Pacific airlines recorded a robust 6.5% growth in international air passenger traffic in the first nine months of this year but posted stagnant cargo volumes.The period saw 31 carriers based in the region, including Thai Airways International and Singapore Airlines, carrying 220 million international passengers compared with 206 million in the same period last year, according to the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA).The aggregate cargo they carried in the period was nearly unchanged, at 47,993 as measured in freight tonne kilometres (FTK) versus 48,008 in the same period last year.But AAPA director-general Andrew Herdman said the air cargo volumes aggregated for the first nine months of the year matching those of the same period last year reflects the modest upswing in demand in recent months, bolstered by higher shipments of electronics designated for product launches.Analysing the most recent performance, the AAPA said September showed steady growth in international air passenger demand and a further uptick in air cargo.Collectively, the region’s airlines carried 23.5 million international passengers in September, representing a 7% increase compared to the same month last year.Spurred by continued growth in both long haul and regional markets, demand in revenue passenger kilometre terms increased by 7.6%, faster than the 6.7% expansion in available seat capacity.As a result, the average international passenger load factor edged 0.6 percentage points higher to 77.9% for the month.In spite of the prevailing weakness in trade conditions, the air cargo market experienced further improvement in September, as reflected in the 5.3% growth in demand as measured in FTK.The average international freight load factor increased marginally, by 0.5 percentage points, to 63% for the month, after accounting for a 4.4% expansion in offered freight capacity.“While air passenger numbers continue to demonstrate resilience, Asian carriers face challenges in the form of intense competition and cost pressures, as crude oil prices have risen from historical lows,” said Mr Herdman.___(c)2016 the Bangkok Post (Bangkok, Thailand)Visit the Bangkok Post (Bangkok, Thailand) at www.bangkokpost.comDistributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.© Tribune Content Agency, source Regional News