Friday, May 30, 2008

High Oil Prices Curb April Air Traffic Growth

High Oil Prices Curb April Air Traffic Growth
(Reuters – IATA)

High oil prices and economic worries damped demand for international air traffic last month, and cross-border cargo shipment growth was sluggish, the airline industry body IATA said on Thursday.

In its monthly traffic report, the International Air Transport Association said air passenger demand rose just 3% in April on a year-on-year basis, while freight demand growth was 3.7% up on the same month in 2007.

"The impact of skyrocketing oil prices and weaker economies has made its way to traffic growth," IATA President Giovanni Bisignani said in a statement. "Combine slowing growth with skyrocketing oil prices, and the industry outlook is grim at best," Bisignani said.

Cross-border air shipments, which IATA measures in freight tonne kilometres, are considered a prime indicator of the health of world trade.

In the first four months of 2008, demand for such cargo shipments was up 3.4% compared with the same period of 2007, a much slower growth rate than in past years. "There has been a step change downwards," Bisignani said.

IATA represents 240 airlines operating 94% of all international passenger and cargo flights. Domestic flights are excluded from its data.

The IATA Report is at

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