Chinese carriers look to American expansion
Statistics from Seabury indicate that the gap between Chinese imports and exports has been shrinking. For the past year, Seabury figures show 2.27 million tonnes of airfreight exports and 1.76 million tonnes of imports. The difference in yields remains stark despite improvements in inbound rates. Faced with load factors around 70 percent in the aftermath of the lunar new year holiday on the outbound legs, Chinese carriers scrapped several transpacific freighter flights in the second half of February, despite good demand for westbound lift.
The year ahead will show less buoyant growth. Air China recently warned that its net profit in the current year would fall below the 2010 results, due to the impact of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan and competition from China’s rapidly growing high-speed railway system.