Gloomy skies for the airline industry
The IATA’s latest loss estimates for the world’s airline industry have increased to $11 billion in 2009. The regional outlook, however, looks brighter.
September 16, 2009 1:17 by Aarti Nagraj
However, the IATA has projected a more positive picture for Middle East airlines; its 2009 loss estimate for the region has decreased from $1.5 billion to $500 billion. “Airlines [in the region] continue to gain long-haul market share with expanded capacity and hub connectivity. The weakness of economic recovery, however, could mean continued excess capacity and further losses,” the IATA said in its report.
Regional airlines do seem to be faring well; Sharjah-based Air Arabia posted a 21 percent increase in its net profits for the first half of the year compared to the same period last year. Last week, it also launched a new low cost airline in Egypt – Air Arabia ‘Egypt’- along with hospitality company Travco Group. Etihad Airways said that July 2009 proved to be its busiest month since its launch. Emirates airline recently said that its Airbus 380 flights may return to New York in the first six months of 2010, thanks to recovering passenger demand.
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