Tag Archives: IATA

DTTAG new executive committee to manage post COVID-19 return to normalcy of travel

Dubai Travel and Tour Agents Group (DTTAG) has been restructured with the appointment of Asim Arshad, CEO, Orient Travel, as the President of the group along with Sumit Acharya, Managing Director BCD Travel, as the Vice President. The group has also revamped the Executive Committee to include industry stalwarts from leading travel agencies, namely Jamal Abdulnazer -CEO Cozmo Travel, Aubrey Heldt – General Manager Kanoo Travel, SavioVaz – Vice President Dnata Travel, Nasir Khan – CEO Al Nabooda Travel, JayaramIyer – Managing Director Sharaf Travel, Narendra Bhatia – Managing Director Team Travel, Santosh Cheriyan, Regional General Manager Akbar Travel. The groups Executive Committee members have been actively working closely with many travel companies and entities in order to coordinate and devise the best strategy to steer their businesses out of the challenges they are currently facing due to COVID-19. Managing the impact of the post COVID scenario on the travel industry and meeting potential changes to consumer behaviour and expectations are key areas of focus for DTTAG and its members in the immediate future. Therefore, DTTAG is playing a pivotal role in facilitating a forum for travel agency members to interact with one another with the goal of meeting needs of a variety of consumers and simultaneously achieving their own business goals through support and cooperation offered by the group’s members and government organisations involved with the Travel and Tourism industry. DTTAG, which enjoys the ongoing support of Emquest a division of the Emirates group and other associate members, has embarked upon an aggressive membership drive among the travel agency community by demonstrating value and effectively representing them with various airlines, government departments, IATA and other partners in the travel …

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ACI and IATA outline roadmap for restarting aviation industry

Airports Council International (ACI) World and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) have called on governments to ensure any new measures introduced for airports and airlines in the wake of COVID-19 are supported by scientific evidence and are consistent across the world. ACI and IATA have jointly issued a paper laying out a pathway for restarting the aviation industry – Safely Restarting Aviation – ACI and IATA Joint Approach. Airlines and airports have cooperated to build a roadmap for resuming operations which reassures the travelling public that health and safety remain the overall priorities. ACI and IATA are both central members the COVID-19 Aviation Recovery Task Force (CART) being led by the Council of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). CART enables the collaboration among governments and between governments and industry, which is vital to ensure the harmonisation and consistency of measures that are essential to restoring air connectivity and passenger confidence in air travel. “Airports and airlines have come together with ICAO and the wider aviation industry to address the biggest challenge ever faced by commercial aviation in restarting a global industry while continuing to halt the spread of COVID-19,” ACI World Director General Angela Gittens said. IATA’s Director General and CEO Alexandre de Juniac said, “Safety is always our top priority and that includes public health. Restoring air connectivity is vital to restarting the global economy and reconnecting people. Our layered approach of measures recommended by airports and airlines safeguard public health while offering a practical approach for a gradual restart of operations.”  

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IATA calls on KSA government to support aviation in the face of COVID-19 crisis

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is calling for aviation-specific financial relief measures from the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to address the severe impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the air transport sector. IATA estimates that revenues generated by airlines in the Saudi market will fall by $7.2 billion in 2020, 35 per cent below 2019 levels. That puts at risk nearly 287,500 Saudi jobs and $17.9 billion of Saudi’s GDP, which is generated by aviation directly and aviation-related tourism. In response to the impact of COVID-19, the Saudi government has introduced broad economic relief measures in excess of $32 billion in financial support for the private sector. It has also provided support for air transport by suspending the airport slot use rules for the summer season and extending licenses and certifications for crew, trainers and examiners. We urge the government to build on this and implement specific financial relief measures for aviation to ensure that the sector will be capable of driving the recovery. “Saudi Arabia has announced financial relief measures for sectors affected by COVID-19, but not specifically for aviation. Given the industry’s role in social and economic development as well as achieving the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, it is important the government prioritises aviation and provide urgent financial relief,” said Muhammad Albakri, IATA’s Regional Vice President for Africa and the Middle East. “Without a viable air transport sector, we can expect a slow and painful economic recovery. Before the crisis, Saudi Arabia was moving at full speed and achieving tangible results in modernisation, infrastructure development and economic growth,” said Albakri.

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Urgent appeal to international community to support African Travel & Tourism sector

Five international air transport and tourism bodies have launched an appeal to international financial institutions, country development partners and international donors to support Africa’s Travel & Tourism sector which employs some 24.6 million people on the African continent. Without urgent funding, the COVID-19 crisis could see a collapse of the sector in Africa, taking with it millions of jobs. The sector contributes $169 billion to Africa’s economy combined, representing 7.1 per cent of the continent’s GDP. The request is being made by the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) of the United Nations, the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), the African Airlines Association (AFRAA) and the Airlines Association of Southern Africa (AASA). “The sector and the millions of livelihoods it supports across the world, including vulnerable communities are particularly exposed. International financial support is key to ensuring that tourism can lead to wider economic and social recovery in these communities,” said Zurab Pololikashvili, Secretary-General, UNWTO. “Containing the pandemic is the top priority. But without a lifeline of funding to keep the Travel & Tourism sector alive, the economic devastation of COVID-19 could take Africa’s development back a decade or more,” said Alexandre de Juniac, Director-General and CEO, IATA. “The Travel & Tourism sector is in a fight for survival, with nearly eight million in Africa alone due to the COVID-19 crisis. Travel & Tourism is the backbone of many economies across Africa and its collapse will lead to hundreds of millions of livelihoods being impacted and enormous financial pressure for years to come. Now, more than ever, it is vital that governments work together on a global coordinated approach towards a swift recovery and ongoing …

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IATA calls for face masks, opposes onboard social distancing

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) supports the wearing of face coverings for passengers and masks for crew while on board aircraft as a critical part of a layered approach to biosecurity to be implemented temporarily when people return to travelling by air. IATA does not support mandating social distancing measures that would leave ‘middle seats’ empty. Evidence suggests that the risk of transmission on board aircraft is low. Mask-wearing by passengers and crew will reduce the already low risk, while avoiding the dramatic cost increases to air travel that onboard social distancing measures would bring. “The aviation industry is working with governments to re-start flying when this can be done safely. Evidence suggests that the risk of transmission on board aircraft is low. And we will take measures—such as the wearing of face coverings by passengers and masks by crew—to add extra layers of protection,” said Alexandre de Juniac, Director General and CEO,IATA. “The cabin environment naturally makes transmission of viruses difficult for a variety of reasons. That helps explain why we have seen little occurrence of onboard transmission. In the immediate term, our aim is to make the cabin environment even safer with effective measures so that passengers and crew can return to travel with confidence. Screening, face coverings and masks are among the many layers of measures that we are recommending. Leaving the middle seat empty, however, is not,” said de Juniac. “Airlines are fighting for their survival. Eliminating the middle seat will raise costs. If that can be offset with higher fares, the era of affordable travel will come to an end. On the other hand, if airlines can’t recoup the costs in higher fares, airlines …

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ACI & IATA call for relief to protect jobs and operations

Airports Council International (ACI) World and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) jointly urge governments to quickly grant financial relief to assist airport operators and airlines during the unprecedented COVID-19 crisis and support the essential connectivity the industry will provide for economic recovery. The industry is united with governments around the world in efforts to stop the spread of the virus, and, in the face of massive government imposed travel restrictions, the industry is doing all it can to maintain air cargo operations vital to supporting global supply chains, including medical shipments critical to fighting COVID-19. ACI and IATA are calling for urgent balanced support to the industry via: Taxation relief, including alleviation of payroll taxes, corporate taxes, concession fees or other government incomes from the industry; and loans, loan guarantees or direct support to maintain financial liquidity across the aviation ecosystem. Angela Gittens, Director General, ACI World, said, “Urgent tax relief and direct financial assistance that is to the benefit of the entire aviation ecosystem is needed to help preserve millions of jobs, protect essential operations, and foster a balanced recovery. Preserving the continuity of operations for airports and airlines and protecting aviation jobs today will result in a faster economic recovery tomorrow.” Alexandre de Juniac, Director General and CEO, IATA, said, “Governments will depend on aviation to be ready to lead an economic recovery when this pandemic is behind us. Governments must act now with financial lifelines that only they can provide for airlines and airports to see them through these extraordinary times. Airlines and airports are in this together. The more financially stable our airport partners are, the more they can help the industry to drive a …

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Passenger demand plunges in March as travel restrictions take hold: IATA

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced global passenger traffic results for March 2020 showing that demand (measured in total revenue passenger kilometers or RPKs) dived 52.9% compared to the year-ago period. This was the largest decline in recent history, reflecting the impact of government actions to slow the spread of COVID-19. In seasonally adjusted terms, global passenger volumes returned to levels last seen in 2006. March capacity (available seat kilometers or ASKs) fell by 36.2% and load factor plummeted 21.4 percentage points to 60.6%. “March was a disastrous month for aviation. Airlines progressively felt the growing impact of the COVID-19 related border closings and restrictions on mobility, including in domestic markets. Demand was at the same level it was in 2006 but we have the fleets and employees for double that. Worse, we know that the situation deteriorated even more in April and most signs point to a slow recovery,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO. “The industry is in free fall and we have not hit bottom. But there will come a time—soon, I hope—when authorities will be ready to begin easing restrictions on mobility and opening borders. It is imperative that governments work with industry now to prepare for that day. It is the only way to ensure that we have measures in place to keep passengers safe during travel and reassure governments that aviation will not be a vector in the spread of the disease. We must also avoid the confusion and complexity that followed 9/11. Global standards that are mutually accepted and operationally practicable will be mission-critical to achieving this. The only way to get there is by working together,” said de …

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Relief is critical for Middle East airlines as COVID-19 impact deepens says IATA

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) renewed its call for government relief measures as the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis in MENA deepen. The region’s airlines could lose $24 billion of passenger revenue compared to 2019. That is $5 billion more than was expected at the beginning of the month; job losses in aviation and related industries could grow to 1.2 million. That is half of the region’s 2.4 million aviation-related employment. Previous estimate was 0.9 million. Full-year 2020 traffic is expected to plummet by 51 per cent compared to 2019. Previous estimate was a fall of 39 per cent. GDP supported by aviation in the region could fall by $66 billion from $130 billion. Previous estimate was $51 billion. These estimates are based on a scenario of severe travel restrictions lasting for three months, with a gradual lifting of restrictions in domestic markets, followed by regional and intercontinental. “Airlines in the Middle East continue to be battered by the impact of COVID-19. Passenger traffic has all but ground to a halt and revenue streams have evaporated. No amount of cost cutting will save airlines from a liquidity crisis. The collapse of air transport will have devastating effects on countries’ economies and jobs. And in a region where aviation is a key pillar of many nations’ economies the effect will be much worse. Direct financial support is essential to maintain jobs and ensure airlines can remain viable businesses,” said Muhammad Al Bakri, Regional Vice President for Africa and the Middle East, IATA. Some of the impacts at national level include: Saudi Arabia- 35 million fewer passengers resulting in a US $7.2 billion revenue loss, risking 287,500 jobs and US $17.9 …

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Slow recovery needs confidence boosting measures says IATA

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) called for governments to work with the industry on confidence-boosting measures in the face of an anticipated slow recovery in demand for air travel. “Passenger confidence will suffer a double whammy even after the pandemic is contained—hit by personal economic concerns in the face of a looming recession on top of lingering concerns about the safety of travel. Governments and industry must be quick and coordinated with confidence-boosting measures,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO. An IATA-commissioned survey of recent travelers found that 6 per cent anticipate a return to travel within one to two months of containment of the COVID-19 pandemic but 40 per cent indicate that they could wait six months or more; and 69 per cent indicated that they could delay a return to travel until their personal financial situation stabilises. Early indications of this cautious return-to-travel behaviour are seen in the domestic markets of China and Australia, where new coronavirus infection rates have fallen to very low levels: China- Domestic demand began to recover when the rate of new COVID-19 infections in China fell into single digits and rapidly headed towards zero (measured by new infections as a percentage of the seven-day moving average of total COVID-19 cases). While there was an early upswing from mid-February into the first week of March, the number of domestic flights plateaued at just over 40 per cent of pre-COVID-19 levels. Actual demand is expected to be significantly weaker as load factors on these flights are reported to be low. China accounts for some 24 per cent of all domestic passengers. Australia- Domestic demand continued to deteriorate even after the rate …

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IATA urge G20 to act quickly to prevent irrecoverable damage to intl connectivity

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) urged G20 leaders to act quickly to support the aviation industry in order to prevent irrecoverable damage to international connectivity arising from the impact of COVID-19. In an open letter to the G20 Presidency, Alexandre de Juniac Director General and CEO, IATA emphasised the essential role that air transport will play in facilitating the recovery of the global economy. Noting that the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting government-mandated border closings and travel restrictions have led to the destruction of global air travel demand, de Juniac made a plea to governments to urgently provide, or facilitate the provision of financial support. He noted that some G20 members already have acted, including Australia, Brazil and China. De Juniac also pointed out that without the global connectivity provided by aviation, sustaining global supply chains, as well as developing country industries such as perishable horticulture and tourism would be impossible. By value, 35 per cent of international trade flown by air, 57 per cent of international tourists travel by air and each airline job contributes to 24 more in the wider economy.

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