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Passenger Traffic Drops In June, H1N1 Also To Blame

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) recently announced that international air passenger traffic fell by 7.2 percent in June when compared to the same month in 2008. However, the drop in international passenger demand was a slight improvement on the 9.3 percent fall in May.

According to IATA, June revenue on international markets dropped by a “shocking” 25-30 percent with a 16.5 percent slump in cargo freight adding to the dim picture. International passenger load factors stood at 75.3 percent, down from 77.6 percent recorded in June2008.

“International passenger demand remains very weak,” said Giovanni Bisignani, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

“While it appears that there is stabilization in some markets, this comes at a steep price,” he said.

Mr. Bisignani mentioned that there are no signs of an early economic recovery.

“Other external risks are potentially great, including rising oil prices and the impact of Influenza A(H1N1) on demand,” he added.

IATA estimated that the effects of Influenza A(H1N1) hit the Asian-Pacific carriers in June as a 14.5 percent annual fall was reported.

Latin American airlines posted a 4.7 percent drop in passenger demand but IATA said there were ”early indications” that the Latin American region was beginning to recover from the impact of swine flu but pointed out that there was ”still uncertainty around the spread of Influenza A(H1N1) and its effect on travel.”

North American airlines also reported a decline in traffic as demand fell by 6.7 percent in June.

Meanwhile, European carriers posted a fall of 7.1 percent, compared to the May drop of 9.4 percent.

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