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Passenger traffic growth slows states IATA

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released industry traffic results for…

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released industry traffic results for the first 10 months of 2005 showing a weakening trend for passenger traffic.

October passenger traffic grew 6.0% compared to the same month in the previous year. This is considerably slower than the 7.9% recorded for the January-October period and is the slowest single-month growth recorded since January 2004.

IATA (International Air Transport Association) represents 265 airlines comprising 94% of international scheduled air traffic.

The IATA Billing and Settlement Plan operates in 71 countries for 390 airline and non-airline participants covering 150 countries and territories.

Explanation of measurements:

RPK: Revenue Passenger Kilometres measures actual passenger traffic

ASK: Available Seat Kilometres measures available passenger capacity

PLF: Passenger Load Factor is % of ASKs used. In comparison of 2004 to 2003, PLF indicates point differential between the periods compared.

IATA statistics cover international scheduled air traffic; domestic traffic is not included.

October 2005 over October 2004 RPK Growth ASK Growth PLF
Africa 6.7% 7.9% 70.4
Asia/Pacific 4.1% 4.0% 72.5
Europe 5.9% 4.6% 77.1
Latin America 8.7% 5.2% 73.4
Middle East 15.1% 12.0% 72.5
North America 5.5% 6.5% 76.9
Industry 6.0% 5.4% 74.8

Year to Date – 2005 over 2004 RPK Growth ASK Growth PLF
Africa 10.6% 8.7% 69.1
Asia/Pacific 7.0% 6.2% 72.9
Europe 6.3% 4.6% 76.9
Latin America 13.1% 10.8% 72.7
Middle East 12.6% 11.1% 73.6
North America 9.5% 8.7% 79.9
Industry 7.9% 6.7% 75.4

Giovanni Bisignani, IATA`s Director General and CEO said, Slowing growth will continue to make the operating environment difficult. There has been some respite in the slight decline of fuel prices in recent weeks. But we are still facing a fuel bill of US$97 billion this year-more than double what it was only two years ago. Continued improvement in cost efficiency remains critical. This will become all the more urgent as the high price of oil broadens its impact on consumer confidence and production.

Giovanni Bisignani, IATA`s Director General and CEO announced the results at the Annual General Meeting of the Arab Air Carriers Organisation in Sanaa, Yemen. The Middle East remains an oasis of good news, said Bisignani. In addition to strong traffic growth, Bisignani noted that the Middle East is also noted that the region is leading in terms of aircraft orders. High growth rates present unique challenges and can hide many problems. I see two challenges in particular-matching capacity and demand at economic pricing levels; keeping labour costs under control at a time of profitable expansion. Strong traffic growth should be an opportunity to build a robust industry for the future.

Theodore Koumelis
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