Middle East carriers lead growth in demand for air travel
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The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has revealed global passenger traffic results for 2015, which shows Middle East carriers with the strongest annual growth.
The figures for global demand (revenue passenger kilometers or RPKs) rose 6.5% for the full year compared to 2014.
It’s the strongest result since the post-global financial crisis rebound in 2010 and well above the 10-year average annual growth rate of 5.5%.
“Last year’s very strong performance, against a weaker economic backdrop, confirms the strong demand for aviation connectivity,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s director general and CEO.
“But even as the appetite for air travel increased, consumers benefitted from lower fares compared to 2014.”
Annual capacity rose 5.6% last year, with the result that load factor climbed 0.6 percentage points to a record annual high of 80.3%. All regions experienced positive traffic growth in 2015. Carriers in the Asia-Pacific region accounted for one-third of the total annual increase in traffic.
Middle East carriers had the strongest annual traffic growth at 10.5%. As a result, the share of international traffic carried by Middle East airlines reached 14.2%, surpassing their North American counterparts (13.4%). Capacity growth of 13.2% exceeded the demand gains, pushing down load factor 1.7 percentage points to 76.4%.
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