Monday, September 27, 2021

Recovery in progress for domestic passenger traffic in July 2021: ICRA

by Staff Correspondent

IADB: Domestic passenger traffic grew ~56-57% at around 48-49 lakh in July, compared to ~31.1 lakh in June 2021, signifying a Y-o-Y growth of ~132%. The airlines’ capacity deployment for July 2021 was around 90% higher than July 2020 (~47,200 departures in July 2021, against 24,770 departures in July 2020). On a sequential basis, the number of departures in July 2021 were higher by ~49%, as Covid-19 infections demonstrated a downward trajectory.

Whilst commenting on the development Ms. Kinjal Shah, Vice President & Co-Group Head, ICRA, said, “For July 2021, the average daily departures were at ~1,500, significantly higher than the average daily departures of ~800 in July 2020, and higher than ~1,100 in June 2021, though it remains at lower than ~2,000 in April 2021. The average number of passengers per flight during July 2021 was 104, against an average of 98 passengers per flight in June 2021. Though the recovery continued in July 2021, there is continued stress on demand, driven largely by the second wave of the pandemic, limiting travel to only necessary travel, while both leisure and business travel have been curtailed due to various state-wide restrictions, despite the decline in infections.”

The Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) permitted increasing the capacity deployment on domestic routes gradually from 33%, with effect from May 25, 2020, to 80%, with effect from December 03, 2020. However, it reduced the permissible capacity deployment to 50% of pre-Covid levels with effect from June 01, 2021, due to the resurgence of the second wave of the pandemic. It has now permitted increasing the capacity to 65% with effect from July 5, 2021, applicable up to July 31, 2021.

While the scheduled international operations have been suspended further till August 31, 2021, under the Vande Bharat Mission (VBM) for evacuation of Indian citizens from foreign countries, which started from May 07, 2020, the international passenger traffic (inbound and outbound) for Indian carriers has been ~39 lakh for the period May 07, 2020 to July 31, 2021. For July 2021, the international passenger traffic for Indian carriers under the VBM was estimated at ~2.1 lakh, a sequential growth of ~43%.

As for the ATF prices, until February 2021, they were lower on a Y-o-Y basis while in March 2021, April 2021, May 2021, June 2021 and July 2021, prices were higher by 3.0%, 59.8%, 103.4%, 86.3% and 59.7%, respectively, on a Y-o-Y basis. In August 2021, the prices were higher by 55.3% on a Y-o-Y basis, attributed to the low base of August 2020, when the prices declined Y-o-Y by 30.5% due to the impact of the pandemic.

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