Higher business travel boosts air traffic: IATA

AFP
AFP - [email protected] • 31 Oct, 2013 Updated Thu 31 Oct 2013 14:58 CEST
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Businesses are spending more on travel and this has helped global air-passenger traffic rise by 5.5 percent in September from the equivalent figure last year, the Geneva-based International Air Transport Association said on Thursday.

"We are seeing a more positive environment for air travel demand, based on rising business confidence," IATA chief Tony Tyler said.
   
Rising export orders and improvements in key emerging markets such as China had also contributed to the improvement, he said in a statement.
   
Despite the continuing strong demand, September nonetheless marked a slight slowdown from August, when global airline traffic grew by 6.8 percent, enabling the industry to match an all-time record of 83.4 percent of seats filled.
   
Last month, in comparison, the load factor stood at a respectable, but far from record-breaking, 80.3 percent, basically unchanged from September 2012.
   
Tyler remained optimistic.
   
"The strong growth of recent months, coupled with the continuing improvements in air travel demand in September, suggests that there could be a further acceleration in air travel growth before the end of the year," he said.
   
Traffic on international routes was up 5.7 percent in September, with Middle East carriers showing the strongest year-on-year traffic growth of 10.4 percent.
   
Asia-Pacific carriers meanwhile registered 8.5 percent growth, IATA said, adding that improvements in the Chinese and Japanese economy in the third quarter appeared to have helped ease the downward pressure on growth seen in recent months.
   
Modest economic improvements also helped boost airline travel in Europe by 3.4 percent, while North American airlines saw demand rise 2.3 percent, after registering 5.1 percent growth in August.

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AFP 2013/10/31 14:58

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