The Korea Herald


Korea's air traffic rises 4% in May

By a2017001

Published : June 29, 2017 - 11:13

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Air traffic in South Korea rose 4 percent in May from a year earlier helped by increased demand on non-Chinese routes, government data showed Thursday.

The number of passengers on Korean and international routes run by domestic airline carriers rose to 8.74 million last month from 8.41 million a year earlier, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transportation said in a statement. 

(Yonhap) (Yonhap)

"An increase in travel demand on routes to and from Japan and Southeast Asian countries helped offset sharp declines in demand on Chinese routes last month," the ministry said in a statement.

The number of passengers on Chinese routes fell 46 percent on-year to 949,665 last month, while that of passengers on Japanese and Southeast Asian routes jumped 44 percent and 21 percent to 1.43 million and 2.23 million, respectively, the statement said.

Starting March 15, China banned the sale of group travel packages to South Korea as part of its apparent retaliation against the installation of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system.

Seoul and Washington have argued THAAD is purely aimed at countering missile threats from North Korea. But Beijing has opposed the system, arguing it could be used against it.

The ministry expected travel demand on Chinese routes will continue to remain weak, but the overall air traffic will continue to rise backed by increasing demand on other Asian routes.

Meanwhile, the country's air cargo traffic also rose 5.6 percent to 340,000 tons last month from a year earlier on robust exports of semiconductors and other information-technology products, the statement said. (Yonhap)