Shanghai airport group says may miss volume target

SHANGHAI, Oct 29 (Reuters) - The parent of Shanghai International Airport Co 600009.SS may fall short of its 2008 passenger volume target as the faltering global economy dents air traffic demand, a senior executive said on Wednesday.

“Many other sectors are feeling the pinch of the crisis and airports are no exception,” Shanghai Airport Authority Chairman Wu Nianzu told reporters on the sidelines of an event.

“We might miss our annual target of 56 million passengers this year.”

The company operates Shanghai’s Pudong International Airport and the smaller Hongqiao International Airport.

After years of robust growth, China’s air passenger volume began to fall in May, as natural disasters and China’s slowing economic growth curbed air travel.

Air China 601111.SS0753.HK and China Eastern Airlines 600115.SS0670.HK, two of the country's three largest carriers, this week reported losses for the third quarter.

Without a major market rebound, which seems unlikely, China’s airline sector will end up in the red in 2008, airline executives and analysts told Reuters earlier this month. ($1=6.838 Yuan) (Reporting by Fang Yan; Editing by Edmund Klamann)