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Air Traffic on a strong turf, registers all round growth: ICRA

The air passenger traffic in the country stood at 23.0 million in March 2017, exhibiting a year-on-year (Y-o-Y) growth of 13% over March 2016. According to an ICRA note, the Y-o-Y growth rate for passenger traffic was 18% in FY2017, while it was 14% and 10% for aircraft traffic and cargo traffic respectively.

Commenting on the development, Mr. Harsh Jagnani, Vice President and Sector Head for Corporate Ratings, ICRA Limited, said: “Although there has been some moderation, as compared to 14% growth witnessed in February 2017, the Y-o-Y air passenger growth has remained healthy at 13% in March 2017., This is primarily on account of a marginal drop in domestic traffic growth, which constitutes 78% of the passenger traffic in the country and has reported a 15% Y-o-Y growth in March 2017 as against 16% growth in February 2017.”

Overall, during FY2017, the Y-o-Y passenger growth has remained robust at 18%, driven primarily by the healthy domestic traffic, which exhibited a strong growth of 22% over FY2016. In line with passenger traffic, the aircraft traffic also reported a healthy Y-o-Y growth of 13% in March 2017 and 14% for FY2017. The growth remained broad-based with 18 out of the top 20 airports exhibiting Y-o-Y increase in passenger traffic in March 2017.

In another positive, the Y-o-Y growth in air cargo traffic doubled to 18% in March 2017 as against 9% in February 2017. Mr. Jagnani said: “Cargo volumes have continued to maintain a positive growth trend over the last twelve months, translating into a healthy overall growth of 10% for FY2017.”
In March 2017, the growth has been driven by improvement in both domestic and international cargo volumes. Moreover, the growth remained well-spread with 18 out of the top 20 airports reporting positive Y-o-Y growth in March 2017.

International cargo traffic, which constitutes over 65% of overall cargo traffic, reported significantly higher Y-o-Y growth of 23% as against 11% growth for domestic cargo in March 2017.    

Air Traffic on a strong turf, registers all round growth: ICRA