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Fri 6 Sep 2019 05:15 PM

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Middle East air passenger demand growth slows after Ramadan

International Air Transport Association says region's airlines report a 1.6% rise in passenger demand in July

Middle East air passenger demand growth slows after Ramadan
Weakness in global trade, volatile oil prices and heightened geopolitical tensions were negative factors for the region in July. (FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images)

Middle East carriers reported a 1.6 percent increase in demand for July, well down on the 8.3 percent growth recorded for June, after the end of Ramadan, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

IATA said weakness in global trade, volatile oil prices and heightened geopolitical tensions were negative factors for the region.

July capacity climbed 1 percent compared to a year ago and load factor rose 0.4 percent to 81.3 percent, IATA added.

Globally, IATA said passenger demand growth for July rose 3.6 percent compared to the same month in 2018. This was down from 5.1 percent annual growth recorded in June.

All regions posted traffic increases while monthly capacity increased by 3.2 percent and load factor rose 0.3 percent to 85.7 percent, a new high for any month.

“July’s performance marked a soft start to the peak passenger demand season. Tariffs, trade wars, and uncertainty over Brexit are contributing to a weaker demand environment than we saw in 2018. At the same time the trend of moderate capacity increases is helping to achieve record load factors,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s director general and CEO.

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