Chinese airlines cutting back as fuel soars, demand slumps

China – the big driver of air travel demand in Asia this decade – is stuttering badly in this crucial Olympics year. Widespread snow-storms at the start of the year, political protests associated with the Torch Relay and most recently a devastating earthquake in Southwest China, as well as tighter visa restrictions for foreign visitors, have all weighed on the airline sector, with growth slowing precipitously in the first four months of the year.

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