The volume of passengers through Vietnam’s airports in February 2020 reached nearly 8.1 million, declining 11.6 per cent over the same period in 2019.
It is notable that international visitors through airports reached 2.4 million, a drop of 29.8 per cent while the domestic tourists declined 0.7 per cent to reach 5.7 million.
During the month, Vietnam’s airlines transported 3.7 million passengers, down 13.7 per cent compared to February 2019. The number of international visitors plummeted by 39.5 per cent to only 870,000 while domestic ones decreased slightly by 0.7 per cent, reaching 2.8 million.
In a bid to control the spread of Covid-19, all Vietnam’s airlines have suspended flights to/from China since early this month and reduced frequencies to South Korea, the new epidemic hotspot after China’s city Wuhan in recent days.
Bamboo Airways and Vietnam Airlines has announced to suspend the operation Vietnam-South Korea flights due to the epidemic.
At meting of Committee for Management of State Capital at Enterprises, CEO of Vietnam Airlines Duong Tri Thanh said that there are 40 aircraft of the carrier’s fleet are being grounded due to the cancellation of flights.
According to Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam, three are three scenarios for domestic aviation market this year.
In the most optimistic scenario with Covid-19 epidemic ending in April, the total aviation market will still reach 80 million visitors, up 1.1 per cent. The volume of passengers through Vietnam’s airports will reach 119 million.
If epidemic ends in June, three will be 74.6 million, down 5.7 per cent and Vietnam's airport will receive nearly 112 million, down 4.2 per cent.
In the worst-case scenario when epidemic ends in August, the two figures will be 65.5 million, down 17.2 per cent and 98.5 million, down 15.5 per cent respectively.
Dr. Can Van Luc and other authors of the BIDV Training and Research Institute in the study "Three scenarios of nCoV epidemic's impact on Vietnam economy" claim that because of declining visitors and the reluctance to gather of people, the air transport industry will decline sharply by about 30 per cent in the first quarter of 2020, causing GDP to drop by 0.03 percentage points.
In the next quarter, it remains difficult and would decrease by 25 per cent, causing GDP to drop by 0.025 percentage points.
For the whole year 2020, air transport may decrease by 20 per cent and cause GDP to decrease by 0.02 percentage points.
KB Securities Vietnam (KBSV) in its report on impact of the Covid-19 epidemic said that aviation business as well as tourism service industry were heavily affected like in SARS pandemic.
The impact of Covid-19 on Vietnam will be more unpredictable because the country is located close to China and the speed of spread of this disease is greater than SARS.
The second is high and increasing proportion of Chinese travelers in the total number of international tourists in Vietnam, accounting for 32 per cent in 2019 as domestic airlines are constantly opening new flights to Chinese provinces.