IATA: Global air passenger traffic up 7.7% in May

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Global air passenger traffic rose by 7.7 percent in May, from a year earlier compared to the same month in 2016, according to the International Air Transport Association.

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Contributing to the traffic were carriers in Africa, Asia-Pacific, Europe and Latin America, but not in the Middle East and North America, IATA reported on Friday.

“Passenger demand is solid and we don’t foresee any weakening over the busy summer months in the Northern Hemisphere. But the rising price of fuel and other input costs are likely to see airlines’ ability to stimulate markets with lower fares taper over the coming months,” IATA Director General and Chief Executive Officer Alexandre de Juniac said in a statement.

“In parallel, rising trade protectionism and barriers to travel are worrying trends that, if unchecked, could impact demand. As a business, airlines depend on borders that are open to trade and people,” De Juniac added.
According to IATA, airfares at the start of the second quarter were around 6 percent lower than a year earlier after having been adjusted for inflation.

This contributed to around two-fifths of the annual growth in passenger traffic recorded in May, IATA said.
“This stimulus is likely to fade further in light of rising airline cost pressures, while business confidence has softened,” it said.

“However, passenger demand is likely to remain well supported during the upcoming peak travel months of July and August,” it added.

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