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The Asia-Pacific region has clearly established itself as the airline industry’s largest market, new statistics show.
International traffic to, from and within Asia-Pacific represented 42% of total international revenue passenger kilometers last year, according to Iata.
Carriers registered in the Asia-Pacific region carried some 33% of total airline passengers in 2014.
The five busiest international and domestic city-pair air routes were all in the Asia-Pacific region.
Airlines worldwide operated about 100,000 flights a day last year, carrying a total of 3.3 billion passengers on scheduled services, up 5.8% on 2013.
Asia-Pacific accounted for 33.3% market share or 1.1 billion passengers, an increase of 8%.
Europe claimed a 26.3% market share, with passengers up by 5.6% year-on-year to 873.4 million, while North America took a 25.3% share with 841.8 million passengers.
The top five airlines ranked by total scheduled passengers carried were: Delta Air Lines (129.4 million), Southwest Airlines (129.1 million), China Southern Airlines (100.7 million), United Airlines (90.4 million) and American Airlines (87.8 million) prior to its merger with US Airways (54.4 million).
Star Alliance maintained its position as the largest airline grouping in 2014 with 23.7% of total scheduled traffic, followed by SkyTeam (20.5%) and Oneworld (18.3%).
Iata director general and chief executive, Tony Tyler, said: “Commercial aviation is a remarkable engine for economic activity. The growth of connectivity illustrates the point. A billion more people boarded aircraft last year than did a decade ago.
“Much of that growth has been in the Asia-Pacific region where expanding connectivity has gone hand-in-hand with economic opportunity.
“The industry’s 2014 performance shows aviation connectivity as a driving force in emerging economies and a critical component in the developed world.”
The information was reported in the 59th edition of Iata’s World Air Transport Statistics yearbook of the airline industry’s annual performance.
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