Asia Pacific carriers posts $9.5bn net profit in 2010

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Asia Pacific carriers reported net profits of $9.5 billion in 2010, rebounding from net losses of $1.7 billion in 2009.

This was mainly driven by a recovery of air travel and air freight demand, and growing operating efficiencies, which included record high load factors, says the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA).

Combined revenues amounted to $147 billion, up 30% from 2009, while the operating expenses increased 18% to $134 billion.

The airlines' total international passenger traffic grew 9.6%, while international air freight was 24% higher in 2010, it adds.

Andrew Herdman, AAPA director general says: "Buoyed by a firm recovery in premium business travel and a very strong rebound in demand for air freight, Asia Pacific carriers saw a welcome return to profitability in 2010, after two years of heavy losses."

Looking ahead, Herdman addds: "The medium and long term prospects for Asia Pacific aviation remain very positive, but the immediate outlook is somewhat clouded by the sharp increase in oil prices this year, which may dampen the global economic recovery. The lingering effects of the Japanese earthquake are also still evident, although there are some early signs of a recovery in demand for travel to and from Japan."