BUSINESS

International passenger flights rise with 9.5 pc

International passenger flights rose with 9.5 per cent in February, compared to the same period last year. The evolution hints at ever growing demand for travel, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), informs Mediafax.


“We are heading in the right direction. In 2 or 3 months, the industry should bounce back to air traffic levels before the recession. This is not as yet a full recovery. The objective is to adjust operations to the two years in which the activity slackened,” the general manager of IATA, Giovanni Bisignani, said in a press release by the association. Last month, the rate of passenger flights’ booking rose to 75.5 per cent. In terms of seasonal figures, the indicator was 79.3 per cent. February normally represents the lowest month for travel, the association points out.


IATA warns, however, that passenger flights in February 2009 were influenced by global economy recession. The demand for travel should increase by another 1.4 per cent to bounce back to the pre-recession figures, the association underlines. European air transporters registered the weakest increase in passenger flights among companies represented by IATA, namely, 4.3 per cent. Weak performance reflects the economic problems of European states, rising unemployment and the strikes of employees in the industry. The transport capacity of European flight operators slumped with 0.5 per cent during the time mentioned. IATA includes about 320 flight operators, which cover 93 per cent of international flights.

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