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Air travel demand grows more slowly in May

IATA has released traffic numbers showing that the growth in demand for air travel slackened somewhat in May, with revenue passenger kilometers increasing by only 4.6% compared to last year, a somewhat lower increase than had been registered in the earlier months of the year.


Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO said: “After a very strong start to the year, demand growth is slipping back toward more historic levels. A combination of factors are likely behind this more moderated pace of demand growth. These include continuing terrorist activity and the fragile state of the global economy. Neither bode well for travel demand. And the shocks of Istanbul and the economic fallout of the Brexit vote make it difficult to see an early uptick.”

The slowing in growth was more marked in international markets. Annual growth in international traffic slowed for the third consecutive month, to 4.3%, from 5% recorded in April year-over-year. However, airlines in all regions still recorded growth and the capacity available increased by 6.1%, causing load factors to decline to 77.1%. International traffic from / to Europe, and North America, showed the smallest growth, while the Middle East and Africa performed much more strongly. Growth in traffic in domestic markets was more significant at 5.1% versus May 2015, with India and China performing particularly well. Internal travel in Brasil, Japan and the Russian Federation declined during the month. In almost all of the major domestic air travel markets, load factors declined or remained static.

Typer added: “The shockwaves of the Brexit vote have extended worldwide and the fallout will affect the air transport industry, from both economic and regulatory perspectives. Aviation plays a vital role in supporting economic growth and development. As the post-Brexit regulatory framework is negotiated between the EU and the UK it is critical that there are no steps backward for aviation connectivity.”

Filed Under Commercial Aviation News.


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