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AsPac carriers fly more passengers in September

MANILA, Philippines - Asia-Pacific based airlines flew more international passengers in September driven by robust growth in the ASEAN market, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) reported.

According to the latest data from the IATA, international traffic flown by Asia-Pacific airlines, measured in revenue passenger kilometers (RPK), grew 8.6 percent in September as compared to the same period last year.

Their capacity also increased 7.7 percent, while load factor inched up 0.7 percentage points to 77.9 percent.

“There are still signs of Asian passengers being put off by terrorism in Europe: traffic on the Europe-Asia route fell by 1.5 percent year-on-year in August and it remains the slowest-growing of the ‘big-four’ international routes so far this year,” IATA’s report read.

“But overall traffic has risen at an annualized rate of 6.3 percent since March, helped by robust growth in ASEAN,” it added.

Meanwhile, global passenger traffic during September also climbed by seven percent compared to the same period in 2015. IATA noted that this was the strongest growth recorded in seven months.

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Capacity rose 6.6 percent and load factor edged up 0.3 percentage points to 81.1 percent.

“September’s growth in passenger demand was healthy. Importantly, this rebound from August weakness suggests that travel demand is showing its resilience in the aftermath of terror attacks,” IATA director general and CEO Alexandre de Juniac said.

“We must, of course, be ever-alert to the ongoing terror threat. And overall the industry is still vulnerable to being buffeted by rising geopolitical tensions, protectionist political agendas, and weak economic fundamentals. This will still be a good year for the airline industry’s performance, but our profitability will continue to be hard-won,” he said.

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