China’s Beijing Capital International Airport spokesperson Li Xiaomei reported accumulated passenger numbers at the airport for 2012 exceeded 70 million on 06-Nov-2012 and the airport expects full-year passengers to exceed 80 million. Ms Li, as quoted by China Daily and China Times, stated passenger numbers at the airport increased from 20 million in 2002 to 70 million in 2011. Capital Airport Corp general manager Zhang Guanghui stated the airport will expand its route network and frequencies to North America and Europe in the future as well as expand its Southeast Asia network. Mr Zhang also stated the airport will focus on routes to South Africa and Latin America. 96 carriers operate more than 1500 services at the airport per week.
Beijing Capital International Airport annual pax to exceed 80 million in 2012
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Philippines-China air service growth to lift Philippines' Chinese tourism as Duterte changes horses
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Japan has more than recovered but the Philippines' underexposure to China is well evident: the Philippines has received the least number of Chinese tourists in Asia. Laos and Cambodia, far smaller than the Philippines, each received more Chinese tourists than the Philippines.
New Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte is pivoting Manila's allegiance away from the US – to China. His presidency is young and the calculation has its sceptics, but China appears to be warming. Following the lifting of its ban on banana trade, China is expected to use President Duterte's visit to Beijing to lift its travel warning against the Philippines. This will likely stimulate large air service growth between China and the Philippines. Yet for existing markets, there is some concern that the Philippines presents new competition.
Chinese long haul secondary city air routes: BA's Chengdu exit does not reflect the broader market
The fastest long haul airline growth is not occurring with Gulf airlines but rather, with services to and from secondary Chinese cities. It is not a secret that local incentives and subsidies, generally common in any market, are especially large in price and duration for secondary Chinese cities. An airline might expect over a third of revenues to be subsidised. This drastically alters the business case in a low-margin industry, hence the proliferation of secondary city services. This extreme dependence on subsidies raises the question of how long governments are willing to issue generous subsidies, and how many routes can be sustainable without them.
British Airways' decision to exit its only secondary Chinese route to Chengdu, in Jan-2017, might suggest the music is ending and the secondary long haul bubble is popping. There is added colour given the recent UK-China air service agreement expansion, and Brexit/British pound depreciation overhangs.
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