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10 Jun 2004
Cathay Pacific Releases May 2004 Traffic Figures



Cathay Pacific Airways today released traffic figures for May 2004 that reflect a slight seasonal downturn in business and leisure travel but an increase in freight shipments.

In May, the airline carried 1,064,516 passengers, down slightly from 1,099,183 passengers carried in April. Passenger traffic during the current between-holidays period is usually lighter. Even so, traffic to and from North America increased and the region has moved up to be the airline's second largest revenue centre after Hong Kong. May's passenger load factor averaged 74.3 percent, down almost three points from 77 percent the previous month.

The volume of cargo carried increased to 79,906 tonnes, up from 76,992 tonnes in April, on the back of strong demand in markets in Europe, North America and North Asia. May's cargo load factor was 70.4 percent, up from 69.8 percent the month before.

Comparisons of the airline's current performance with that of last year are distorted by the SARS-related slump in 2003. Comparing 2004 with 2002 over the first five months of the year, passenger numbers have grown 7% whilst cargo tonnage is up 15% over the two-year period.

Cathay Pacific General Manager Revenue Management, Sales & Distribution Ian Shiu said: "Even though passenger numbers dipped slightly from last month it was still a record May, with both passenger numbers and revenue boosted by increased capacity, very busy long-haul routes and exchange rate gains. However, higher fuel prices are a serious concern and the surcharge on passenger services does not recoup our added costs."

Cathay Pacific Director & General Manager Cargo Ron Mathison said: "Cargo loads were satisfactory for both import and export markets, particularly out of Hong Kong to markets in Europe, North America and North Asia. High fuel prices are a cause for concern both in terms of the cost of transportation and the potential long-term impact on the world economy and growth of trade."

Cathay Pacific Airways
Corporate Communication Department