The International Air Transport Association (IATA) says African airlines posted the strongest demand growth globally with February traffic up by 12.7 per cent compared to same month in 2015.
This is contained in IATA’s global passenger traffic results for February which was issued by its Director General, Mr Tony Tyler, and obtained by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Lagos.
According to the statement, the pick-up indicates that African carriers are regaining market share through efforts to rationalise networks and enhance revenue management systems, after several difficult years.
“It also aligns with a jump in exports from Africa. Capacity rose 13.4 per cent, and load factor slipped 0.4 percentage points to 63.7 per cent,” the statement said.
It further noted that there was a strong growth in air travel demand for both domestic and international traffic globally.
The statement said that the total Revenue Passenger Kilometres (RPKs) rose to 8.6 per cent, compared to the same month last year.
It added that monthly capacity (available seat kilometres or ASKs) increased by 9.6 per cent, and load factor declined 0.7 percentage points to 77.8 per cent.
“In the first two months of 2016, demand for passenger connectivity is off to its strongest start in eight years.
“However, February was the first month since the middle of 2015 in which capacity growth exceeded demand, which caused the global load factor to decline,” the statement said.
It also condemned the March 22 terrorist attacks in Brussels, Belgium, noting that it is a grim reminder that transportation, including aviation, remains a target for terrorism.
The statement reiterated further,“ the attacks in Brussels were an attack on humanity, a terrible tragedy, that was met with resilience.
“The subway is back in operation. And the airport is working hard to return to normal operations that will reconnect Europe’s capital with the world.
“Aviation is a force for good. And we are once again proving that terrorists will never succeed in destroying the fundamental urge of people to travel, explore and learn about the world.”