Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) director general Andrew Herdman has labelled the condition of a number of the region’s airlines as “critical” as the organisation revealed new data showing passenger numbers continued their lower trend during August.
Compared to the same time last year, scheduled passenger traffic was down by 2.9 per cent in August, although a 6.7 per cent reduction in capacity saw load factors rise by 1.5 points to 77.9 per cent. Freight was also lower, with freight-tonne-kilometres down by 12.2 per cent, although capacity cuts saw load factors increase marginally to 66.9 per cent.
“The airline industry remains in critical condition, despite some signs of a modest recovery in traffic volumes in recent months,” said Herdman. “Airline revenues have been further undermined by the need to aggressively discount fares to stimulate demand in a shrinking market. Even with the benefit of capacity cutbacks and other cost reduction efforts, airlines are still suffering heavy losses, and are focused on survival. Along with manufacturers and other service providers in the value chain, we need to work together to weather the crisis, and ensure that the industry continues to meet the needs of the travelling public for safe, secure and affordable air travel, whilst positioning for recovery.”