ACI’s September 2009 PaxFlash traffic shows the stabilization trend of the past two months has been maintained and the domestic traffic in certain national markets is registering growth compared to September 2008. Overall domestic passenger traffic rose by 4.4% worldwide, and global passenger traffic rose by 1.6%.
“The downward trend began to ease in the second quarter and now in the fourth quarter we are seeing growth,” Angela Gittens, director general of ACI World, told members attending the ACI annual conference in Kuala Lumpur “We are not just seeing ‘less worse’ results, but some clear signs of new growth in selected domestic markets. This contributes to the positive global results despite international traffic coming in at 1% percent below results in 2008.
“Of course, we are comparing the latest results to September 2008, when traffic was already dropping due to economic conditions,” she continued. “Nonetheless, the flattening of the trend curve is a good sign. It may signal a sustained trend since domestic traffic is often a precursor to international traffic recovery.”
Leading the global upswing are domestic traffic results in Brazil, China and India; the Asia Pacific and Latin America-Caribbean regions dominated September traffic results with domestic traffic increases of 12.5% and 16.2%, respectively. Brazil and China benefitted from economic stimulus programs, stiff domestic competition and low fares; North America, Europe and Africa remained flat in terms of domestic traffic change.
“Industry data illustrates that over the past 30 years, airport traffic recovered relatively quickly from the impact of economic cycles and extraordinary events,” Gittens said. “In a prolonged economic downturn, the rebound may be less immediate, and our forecast for 2010 anticipates a conservative 2.5% growth for next year, with the domestic markets taking the lead.”
International traffic has increased in all regions from earlier this year, though Europe is lagging slightly behind the recovery trend. In North America, domestic traffic has increased by 0.5%, and international traffic is down 3%. Worldwide, international traffic was down 1% from September 2008.
In other ACI news…
Max Moore-Wilton has been elected the new chairman of Airports Council International for a two-year term, effective Jan. 1.
Moore-Wilton has been a regional advisor and a member of the ACI Governing Board and vice chairman of the board this year.
In December 2002, he was named executive chairman and chief executive of the privatized Sydney Airport Corp. In April 2006, he was appointed chairman of Sydney Airport Corp. Ltd. He is also chairman of MAp Airports Ltd. And chairman of Macquarie Media Group.
“We welcome Max as our new Chair at ACI,” Gittens said at the conference. “He has extensive experience in working with our association on the World Governing Board and has also served as head of the ACI Asia-Pacific Region Board.
“As we begin our steady climb out of a very tough economic year, Max’s extensive airport management experience and dedication to the field of aviation throughout his distinguished career will hold him in good stead,” she continued. “He has been an enthusiastic and committed member of our board. I look forward to working with him over the next two years to ensure continuity in the work we have begun and in fine-tuning the way in which we serve ACI members worldwide.”
In accepting the role, Moore-Wilton commented, “I am very proud and honored to be elected as the new chair of ACI. I have been actively involved in the work of ACI since 2006 as the president of the ACI Asia-Pacific region. ACI has a unique role in the aviation industry and we act as the voice of the worlds’ airports, representing over 1,650 airports from all over the world.”