Mideast long-haul flights outperform global growth trend

April 22, 2015 9:36 am 

DUBAI, April 21 — Long-haul flights to and from the Middle East outperformed international travel markets in February, the Air Transport Association (IATA) said Monday.

The IATA said in its monthly premium traffic monitor that passenger travel on international markets rose 4.6 percent in February compared to a year ago, up from 3.7 percent in January.

By contrast, "long-haul markets continue to perform relatively strongly, including the Middle East, the Far East/Europe and the North and Mid Pacific, which explains why international revenue passenger kilometers (RPKs) increased at a much faster pace than passenger numbers," said the global civil aviation body.

Examples include international travel between Europe and the Middle East (up 5.4 percent year-on-year in February) and between the Middle East and the Far East (up 7.1 percent).

As for the outlook in the coming months, the latest data show signs of increased business confidence in Europe and the U.S.. "This could help ease some of the downward pressure on business-related international air travel in coming months."

However, the International Monetary Fund last week reduced its growth forecast for the Middle East to 2.9 percent for 2015, down from its earlier prediction of 3.3 percent. (PNA/Xinhua)

LAM/EBP

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