Saturday, April 25, 2009
Aviation industry remains in crisis as air travel and cargo dip
Kuala Lumpur - International passenger volume and demand for air cargo were down again in March, as airlines were warned that an end to the industry crisis was nowhere in sight, the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) said Friday. Asia-Pacific airlines carried a total of 11.2 million passengers in March, a drop of 10.8 per cent from March 2008, while air cargo volumes dropped by 21.9 per cent. Demand for premium services remained weak, as companies across the globe seek to cut costs such as travel expenses, the association's director-general Andrew Herdman said in a statement. "Whilst the crisis confronting the industry remains acute, traffic levels do seem to be stabilising, even though there is, as yet, no sign of any uptick in demand that might signal the beginnings of a recovery process," Herdman said. March's figures reflect a continued trend of dropping demand in air passenger and cargo volume frim last year, when AAPA's 17-member airlines recorded 141.5 million passengers, a 1.8-per-cent drop from the year before, and a 6.1-per-cent dip in air cargo.