World body slams Acsa fee hike

2009-12-15 16:24

Johannesburg - The Airports Company SA (Acsa) has become a member of the air transport industry's "Hall of Shame" for proposing a massive increase in its fees, the International Air Transport Association (Iata) said on Tuesday.

"This is just in time to greet all of the visitors who will be coming to the next soccer world cup," said Iata's director-general and CEO, Giovanni Bisignani, in response to Acsa's proposal to raise its fees by 133% in 2010 and 2011.

Bisignani said Iata had revised its financial outlook for 2010 to an expected $5.6bn global net loss, larger than the previously forecast loss of $3.8bn.

For 2009, Iata maintained its forecast of an $11bn net loss.

"The world's airlines will lose $11bn in 2009.

"We are ending an annus horribilis that brings to a close the 10 challenging years of an aviation decennis horribilis," Bisignani said in a statement.

Between 2000 and 2009, airlines lost $49.1bn, an average of $5bn per year, he added.

However, he said the worst was most probably behind the industry.

For 2010, some key statistics were moving in the right direction. "Demand will likely continue to improve and airlines are expected to drive down non-fuel unit costs by 1.3%.

"But fuel costs are rising and yields are a continuing disaster."

Bisignani said airlines would remain firmly in the red in 2010, with $5.6bn in losses.

- Sapa