PH, rest of Asia to see fastest air travel growth in next 20 years
The Philippines and the rest of Asia are expected to register the fastest growth in terms of passenger origin in the next two decades—even outpacing Europe—on the back of a recovering economy and accelerating cross-border mobility, according to aircraft leasing company Avolon.
This means more airline passengers are projected to come from the Philippines and other Asian countries.
In its World Fleet Forecast 2023-2042 report, Avolon noted that Asia’s compounded annual growth rate for revenue passenger kilometers (RPK), which measures air traffic for jets, is estimated to reach 5 percent.
This does not include China with 3.7 percent and India with 4.4 percent.
“By 2042, Asia (excluding China and India) is forecast to overtake Europe as the largest market of passenger origin, driven by countries with growing populations such as Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam,” Avolon said. Growth rate for Europe, meanwhile, is calculated at 3.1 percent. This market, along with North America, is seen to only have moderate growth as they are mature markets.
“Economic growth, positive demographic trends and increasing disposable income will enable these [Asian] markets to drive the industry forward into the next decade and beyond,” the aircraft leasing firm explained.
According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), air travel has maintained momentum with RPK growing by 39.1 percent in May from a year ago. Global traffic has achieved 96.1 percent of the prepandemic levels.
“We saw more good news in May. Planes were full, with the average load factors reaching 81.8 percent,” IATA director general William Walsh said.
In Asia Pacific, air traffic rose by 156.7 percent in May from the previous year.
The local airports have been regaining passenger movement with the easing of mobility restrictions and ramping up of both local and international routes but the lack of available aircraft is posing a challenge to the aviation sector.
Recently, carriers Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific had to cancel or suspend several flights as some of their aircraft were parked for maintenance. US-based engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney is unable to provide required aircraft maintenance immediately due to supply chain issues.
Both airlines are now augmenting their fleet and reducing flights to mitigate the situation.