BEIJING, May 29 (Xinhua) -- China's civil aviation industry saw air passenger volume reach 552 million last year, a 13 percent increase year on year, according to the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).
"The civil aviation industry [now] plays more important roles in boosting the economy-society development," said the 2017 civil aviation statistical bulletin issued by the CAAC.
In 2017, the entire industry saw air mail cargo of 7.06 million tonnes, a 5.6 percent increase year on year.
By the end of last year, there were 58 airlines in China, which offered services on 4,418 air routes. The country's civil aviation fleet reached 3,296 aircraft.
In the airport business sector, China's 229 certified airports handled passenger throughput of more than 1.15 billion, and cargo of 16.18 million tonnes, up 12.9 and 7.1 percent year on year, respectively.
China's civil aviation industry made operating revenues of 746 billion yuan (about 117 billion U.S. dollars) in 2017.
The country is forecast to surpass the United States to become the world's largest civil aviation market by 2022, according to a report by the International Air Transport Association.