The Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) says the solid expansion in international air cargo markets continued unabated in August and it was propelled by demand for manufacturing goods.
AAPA explains firm demand for manufactured products, particularly pharmaceutical goods and technological equipment, underpinned the month’s strong 12.2 per cent increase in air cargo demand as measured in freight tonne kilometres (FTK).
The growth in air cargo volumes significantly outpaced the 5.6 per cent expansion in offered freight capacity, leading to a 3.8 percentage point rise in the average international freight load factor to 64.1 per cent for the month.
AAPA says growth in both the freight and passenger markets was supported by high business confidence levels across the services and manufacturing sectors in major advanced and emerging economies.
AAPA director general, Andrew Herdman says: “The sustained growth in air traffic demand has clearly been positive for the sector. Nevertheless, against the backdrop of a challenging operating environment marked by highly competitive air fares and rising costs, Asian carriers are continuing to work hard to improve profitability, with considerable variations in individual airline performance, both globally and within the region.”
Looking ahead, Herdman adds: “Broad-based expansion in global economic output should help to sustain further growth in both air passenger and air cargo traffic demand in the upcoming months, and the longer term outlook remains broadly positive.”