• Kyodo News

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Japan Airlines Corp. said it carried 10.72 million international passengers in the year that ended in March, down 8.4 percent from a year earlier and the fifth consecutive year of decline.

All Nippon Airways Co. said it flew 4.13 million people on its international flights, up 3.4 percent, after a drop in traffic the previous year.

The decline in JAL’s international passengers was attributed to the global economic downturn, cuts in flights and routes, and customers shunning the airline amid its bankruptcy concerns.

Domestic passenger numbers at JAL and ANA declined in fiscal 2009 for the third consecutive year, with those flying on JAL dropping 9.5 percent to 37.23 million and those using ANA decreasing 8.6 percent to 37.95 million, they said.

In March alone, JAL said the number of its international passengers fell 6.4 percent from a year earlier, while domestic passengers were off by 3.1 percent.

ANA saw a 23.1 percent increase in international passengers in March, while the number of domestic passengers remained unchanged from the level a year earlier, the airline said.

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