CAPA Global Aviation Industry Outlook 2013 hunts for certainty
“Uncertainty has become the new normal,” begins new research issued this week by the CAPA Centre for Aviation, “and risk reduction takes on a high priority for many airlines as Europe’s economy stutters and the US struggles for traction.”
The research comes as CAPA prepares to release its free 1,000-page Global Aviation Industry Outlook 2013, which it describes as an airline industry first.
Airlines are struggling to achieve corporate goals such as improving the financial position, paying down debt, aligning capacity to demand, cutting costs and adopting better fuel hedging positions.
CAPA argues that certain factors are creating a new paradigm for the aviation industry, particularly three main themes – the growth of uncertainty, the rise of China and Asia and the fact that “the Gulf carriers have changed the world, seemingly impervious to the pressures of most other airlines”.
Legacy airlines are pushing towards higher load factors to match the newer cost-sensitive airlines. They are responding to uncertainty with conservative capacity restraint, strategic route pull-backs and reshaping aircraft configurations.
They are also establishing a low-cost subsidiaries, especially in Asia. Even Cathay Pacific is looking to set up two new LCCs at Hong Kong Airport.
Now European majors are also looking to fight too-high costs on short-haul spokes with the operation of low-cost subsidiaries.
[pictured: The Rolls-Royce Trent 500 powers the Airbus A340-500/600; copyright © Rolls-Royce plc 2010]