India pipped China in air travel demand for Jan

Untitled-1NEW DELHI: India outperformed China in terms of air travel demand in January as its domestic air passenger traffic logged a healthy 17.9 per cent growth over the year-ago period, according to the data released by IATA.

The overall air traffic during this period posted 4.6 per cent growth with international traffic growing 5.4 per cent and domestic travel demand going up by 3.2 per cent, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) said.

According to IATA, China’s domestic air travel rose just 2.1 per cent in January of this year compared to the year ago due to the timing of the Lunar New Year falling in February (a month later than in 2014) as well as a contraction in volumes in January as compared to December, after adjusting for seasonal factors.

However, the passenger-carrying capacity in India declined by 1.2 per cent despite a healthy load factor of 84 per cent recorded during the month, said the global airlines’ body.

“The 4.6 per cent growth in global air traffic represents a slower start to the year compared to the 2014 full-year growth of 5.9 per cent. However, results likely were affected by the timing of the Lunar New Year in Asia, which occurred one month later this year compared to 2014,” said IATA Director General and Chief Executive, Tony Tyler.

The capacity of the global carriers in the month rose 5.2 per cent and load factor slipped 0.5 percentage points to 77.7 per cent, IATA said, adding that while domestic markets drove growth in the latter part of 2014, international traffic was stronger in January.

“January traffic did not maintain the rate of growth attained in 2014; nevertheless, we are seeing healthy though slightly slower growth in the demand for air services. While January was a relatively positive start for the year, we cannot look ahead without seeing some significant risk factors in the macro-economic and political environment,” Tyler added. -PTI

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