Aviation article(s)
July 27, 2023
Source: Singapore Changi Airport

Asia Pacific airlines recorded another cargo volume slowdown in June as global trade remained muted, and the easing of ocean shipping rates further dampened demand for air freight transport.  


Preliminary June 2023 traffic figures released by the Kuala Lumpur-based Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) showed international air cargo demand — measured in freight tonne-kilometres (FTK) — declining 8.1% year-on-year.


"Global trade activity was muted with the ongoing declines in new export orders. The easing in container shipping rates relative to air freight rates further discouraged demand for air shipments," AAPA said in a statement.


June's air cargo decline follows a 7% year-on-year drop in May 2023 against the background of persisting global economic uncertainties and a 5.5% decline in April. International air cargo demand also dropped 10.9% year-on-year in March, a 9.8% decline in February, and a steeper 20.5% year-on-year decline recorded in January this year.


For the full-year 2022, Asia Pacific airlines saw air cargo demand also drop by 8.2%.

Self Photos / Files - ffb197c597e4470bb9007f9aab21c0ef.png

 Source: AAPA

"During the same period, the region's carriers posted a 10% decline in air cargo demand. A myriad of factors, including a post-pandemic shift in spending from goods to services and higher merchandise prices, weighed on global air cargo markets," said Subhas Menon, AAPA director-general.


Meanwhile, in June, AAPA said offered capacity edged 0.7% higher, leading to a 5.9 percentage point fall in the average international freight load factor to 60.7% for the month.


In contrast to the downtrend in air cargo volumes, AAPA noted robust recovery in the passenger segment.


In June, Asia Pacific airlines carried 23.2 million international passengers, representing a 159.3% year-on-year increase compared to the same month last year. 


Looking ahead, Menon said, the outlook for air travel remains positive, buoyed by the ongoing restoration of flights and networks.


"The travel and tourism sector is rebounding strongly and contributing to the global economy," the AAPA chief added.

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