Iata concerned over aviation passenger 'downtrend'

Iata concerned over aviation passenger 'downtrend'

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Iata has voiced concern at a potential “downtrend” in global passenger carryings.

International carryings rose by 3.2% in November over the same month in 2014, but this represented a slowdown on October.

“Although part of the weakness could be attributed to temporary factors, there are reasons for concern that a downtrend is developing,” the airline trade body said.

“Both economy and premium travel weakened, but there was a notable deceleration in first and business class travel.”

Economy class travel was up 3.4% year-on-year, while premium travel was only 0.7% higher in November.

The weakness in air travel in November was mostly a result of Europe-Far East routes with strikes at Lufthansa having a “downward impact”. 

“But further slowdown in the Chinese economy could be eroding demand, particularly for business-related air travel, which raises concerns that a downtrend is emerging,” Iata warned.

The association described the outlook for international passenger growth as remaining mixed because growth during the recent past has been narrowly based and supported by the Within Europe and North Atlantic markets.

“Weakness in other regions, like Asia, has become more of a concern with the November data showing signs of a downtrend developing,” Iata added.

One area that continues to perform strongly is travel across the  North Atlantic, with numbers up in November by 5.7% year-on-year.

Iata said: “Although it is not clear if the US economy has recovered adequately from the recession to tolerate an increase in interest rates, indicators continue to suggest that improvements are on track, which bodes well for air travel demand.

“And while economic conditions in the eurozone remain fragile, growth has been positive and steady for several months now. Better performance of eurozone economies has helped support business-related air travel across the North Atlantic.”

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