The Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) says that a strong increase in passenger and freight traffic during February 2010 was a sign that the global economic recovery has gained momentum.
For the month, the number of passengers carried by AAPA members increased by 16.9 per cent, raising RPKs by 14 per cent. Capacity increased by 2.4 per cent, which resulted in passenger load factor increasing from 71.1 per cent to 79.2 per cent.
Freight traffic showed a greater resurgence, with freight tonne kilometres up by 29.8 per cent, while capacity was up by 10.2 per cent. Freight load factor rose by 10.3 percentage points to 68.5 per cent.
AAPA director general Andrew Herdman said that the figures for February showed a continued recovery in passenger and freight traffic which was evident from the last quarter of 2009. “The recovery in both passenger travel and air cargo demand is certainly welcome, but will need to be coupled with careful management of costs and available capacity, if airlines are to succeed in restoring profitability following two years of heavy financial losses,” he said.