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China to purchase 218 aircraft in 2010; passenger levels to soar to 1.5 billion by 2030


CAAC Director General, Li Jiaxiang, stated that China plans to purchase 218 aircraft (regional and widebody aircraft) in 2010 to meet increased demand for air travel, according to Xinhua, China’s official press agency. CAAC is forecasting a 12% increase in passenger and freight traffic from 2009 levels (of 230 million passengers and 4.46 million tons of cargo).

Chinese mainland carriers’ passenger numbers and passenger numbers growth: 2003 to 2009

Chinese airline passenger numbers are expected to grow to 700 million p/a by 2020, with this likely to double (to 1.5 billion) by 2030, according to the CAAC.

See related report: 2010 could be a big year for Chinese airlines as traffic booms. Will they look to invest abroad?

Freight back to pre-crisis levels

Total Chinese traffic has grown by 18% in Jan/Feb-2010, according to the CAAC, with freight growth of 95% and volumes recovering to pre-crisis levels.

See related report: Air China and Cathay Pacific set up Shanghai cargo JV. Chipping away the Hong Kong hub

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