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Changi Airport unveils S$100m scheme to combat passenger traffic decline

Changi Airport Group commits S$100 million to its Growth and Assistance Incentive (GAIN) programme to help boost passenger traffic and lower airline costs.

SINGAPORE: Changi Airport Group (CAG) announced on Thursday (June 12) a wide-ranging Growth and Assistance Incentive (GAIN) programme aimed at boosting passenger traffic and laying the foundation for more efficient operations at Changi Airport in the years ahead.

In a statement, CAG said it will commit S$100 million to the GAIN programme, which will be implemented over the coming year. For its airline partners, CAG will offer an across-the-board reduction in operating costs, including rebates of 50 per cent on aircraft parking fees and 15 per cent on aerobridge fees. This will be applicable from July 1, 2014, to June 30, 2015, it added.

It will also introduce a new package that rewards airlines for growing transfer traffic at Changi Airport, and encourage them to get on its FAST@Changi initiative that offers self-service options for departing passengers. 

In order to stimulate traffic demand, CAG will invest in destination marketing campaigns to promote Singapore in major source markets like Australia, China, India, Indonesia and Russia.

“The incentives and support programmes beyond the coming year will be calibrated depending on how traffic patterns at Changi Airport and how the operating conditions of airlines in the region develop,” it added.

DECLINING PASSENGER TRAFFIC

CAG also acknowledged a decline in passenger traffic, saying it has seen year-on-year declines in February and March this year. It attributed market factors such as the rise of the Singapore dollar versus key travel markets such as India and Indonesia, and political uncertainty in Thailand, to the drop.

Reduced Chinese demand for travel to South-East Asia has also dampened passenger traffic to and from these key markets, it said.

CAG CEO Lee Seow Hiang said: “We are cognisant of the market conditions faced by (our airline partners). While we cannot iron out the volatilities of the industry cycle, we believe that GAIN will provide helpful temporary cost relief as airlines implement the necessary measures needed to adjust to the evolving market environment."

Mr Lee added the programme provides encouraging opportunities for its partners to explore new ideas and initiatives - whether to stimulate travel demand or to boost productivity - that will help position CAG "strongly for the next wave of growth".

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