According to the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA), Asia Pacific-based airlines carried a combined total of 17 million international passengers in August 2011, a 3.9 per cent increase over the same month last year.
International passenger traffic, measured in revenue passenger kilometre (RPK) terms, grew by 5.3 per cent, reflecting good demand on long haul routes.
The number of aircraft seat available grew by 6 per cent, resulting in a slight 0.6-point fall in the average international passenger load factor to 79.3 per cent.
“For the first eight months of the year, Asia Pacific-based airlines carried 126 million passengers, 3.5 per cent up on the same period last year,” said Mr, Andrew Herdman, AAPA Director General.
“Passenger air travel demand is still quite strong, supported by continued growth in both business and leisure travel.”
However, he pointed out, airline margins are being pressured by high oil prices.
“Overall, Asia Pacific airlines are in a relatively favourable position, given that many of the region’s economies are still reporting solid growth.
“However, the recent deterioration in the global economic outlook is cause for concern, and could undermine both business and consumer confidence, leading to a more cautious view on medium-term growth prospects.”