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Good demand for African airlines continues

May 04 2017 19:00

Cape Town - African airlines continued to enjoy good demand, with traffic up 6.0% compared to March 2016, according to a report by the International Air Transport Association (Iata) on global passenger traffic results for March 2017.

Capacity rose 2.4%, and load factor strengthened 2.3 percentage points to 68.2%. Notwithstanding fragility in the region’s biggest economies (Nigeria and South Africa), traffic growth has strengthened in recent months with RPKs growing at an annualised pace of nearly 10% since mid-2016.

According to Iata, this pick-up reflects a combination of faster growth on the key market to and from Europe, and also between Africa and the Middle East.

The report shows that globally demand rose 6.8% compared to the same month a year ago. Capacity grew 6.1% and load factor climbed by half a percentage point to 80.4%, which was a record for the month.

March demand growth represented a moderate slowdown relative to performance in February after adjusting for the distortion in the year-to-year comparisons owing to the extra day in February 2016. The imposition of the ban on large electronics in the cabin on certain routes to the US and UK occurred too late in March to have an effect on traffic figures.

“Strong traffic demand continued throughout the first quarter, supported by a combination of lower fares and a broad-based upturn in global economic conditions. The price of air travel has fallen by around 10% in real terms over the past year and that has contributed to record load factors. We will have to wait another month to see the impact of the laptop ban on demand,” said Alexandre de Juniac, Iata’s director general and CEO.

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iata  |  africa  |  airlines  |  aviation

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