International traffic growth slows in November: IATA

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Growth in international air traffic slowed in November, industry association IATA said Thursday, noting that the expansion in demand was dipping to normal levels after a sharp recovery.

"The industry is shifting gears in the recovery cycle. Growth is slowing towards normal historical levels in the five to six percent range," said Giovanni Bisignani, director general of the International Air Transport Association.

Passenger traffic growth reached 8.2 percent in November compared to a year ago, while freight traffic was up 5.4 percent.

European carriers posted a 7.3 percent growth, although they were hit by industrial action and bad weather conditions.

"The impact of these will continue to be seen in December's traffic," noted IATA.

North American carriers recorded 9.5 percent in passenger demand growth for November, while Asia-Pacific airlines posted 5.8 percent.

Middle-eastern carriers said growth reached 16.7 percent in November. IATA noted that these airlines had gained market share over the recession and recovery period, as they handled 16 percent more traffic in November than at their pre-recession peak in 2008.

African airlines posted a year-on-year growth of 16.4 percent, moving 11 percent more travellers in November than before the recession.

Latin American carriers were hurt by the failure of Mexicana, with traffic flat in November compared to a year ago.

Meanwhile, freight traffic was back to the pre-recession levels.

Asia-Pacific carriers in particular moved 4.1 percent more freight in November than a year ago.

© 2010 AFP

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