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Record earnings in 2010 for Chinese airlines. Strong 1Q2011, but challenges ahead

In 2010, China’s aviation industry reported record high profitability as the nation’s airlines recovered strongly from heavy losses incurred during 2008/09 amid a plunge in air travel and wrong-way bets on fuel prices. Industry operating revenues (including airports and airlines) increased 37.2% to CNY411.5 billion in 2010, driven by a 39.8% increase in airline revenue to CNY299.9 billion. Industry profits soared to CNY43.7 billion, which was three times greater than the previous corresponding period, driven by airline profits, which at CNY35.1 billion were 5.2 times greater than in the previous corresponding period.

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