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Indiaexportnews.com

Asian air cargo posts 2018 gains, offsetting December slowdown

  28.01.2019    

Air cargo carriers in Asia posted increased in 2018 despite a slowdown in December, reported London's Air Cargo News.
Cathay Pacific saw cargo traffic rise for the whole of last year by 4.2 per cent year on year to 12.1 billion revenue freight tonne kilometres, noting it was the groups' most successful year for cargo since 2011, albeit the company registered a year-on-year decline of 5.9 per cent in December.
Said Cathay cargo chief Ronald Lam: "We finished the year-end peak with strong movements of cargo in the weeks leading up to Christmas and demand slowed down towards the end of the month. Uncertainty remains in the coming months regarding the trade situation between China and the US."
This performance is reflected by some of the figures released by analysts in November, when traffic between China and the US took a hit as a result of the trade tariff standoff between the two countries.
Capacity additions also led to its average load factor for the year declining to 67.7 per cent from 68.8 per cent last year.
Another of the region's largest cargo carriers, Air China, saw cargo demand increase by 5.8 per cent last year to eight billion revenue freight tonne kilometres, led by international traffic.
While the airline noted growth, the year-on-year percentage improvement was the lowest the airline has recorded since 2012. It also saw its average load factor for the year decline to 56.1 per cent against 56.7 per cent in 2017.
The airline also saw traffic growth decrease as the year progressed - the fourth quarter saw lower growth than any of the other previous quarters.
Recording the largest percentage increase was China Southern, which reported a cargo traffic gain of 7.1 per cent to 7.5 billion revenue freight tonne kilometres in 2018, again led by international demand.
This was the airline's best year for cargo, although the pace of growth was down on 2017 levels and its load factor slipped to 52 per cent from 53.6 per cent in 2017.
Unlike Cathay Pacific and Air China, December ended up being quite a busy month for China Southern with cargo traffic improving by 8.7 per cent year on year.
Singapore Airlines Cargo registered a 0.8 per cent decrease in cargo traffic to 7.1 billion freight tonne kilometres in 2018, which is its first annual decline in traffic since 2014. Its cargo load factor for the year stood at 63.5 per cent compared with 65.4 per cent in 2017.
Growth weakened towards the end of the year, culminating in a five per cent decline in traffic in December.
In Taiwan's China Airlines registered an improvement in freight revenue tonne kilometres of 2.9 per cent to 5.9 billion for 2018, while December registered a 0.2 per cent drop. Eva Air was down 0.8 per cent to 3.7 billion revenue tonne kilometres for the year and December decreased by 6.3 per cent.
Both airlines' cargo revenues surged ahead despite market growth slowing compared with 2017 - Eva Air saw its revenues grow by 11.3 per cent and China Airlines' was up by 15 per cent.



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