ACI records an overall increase of 5.3% in August passenger traffic

9 October 2014 (Last Updated October 9th, 2014 18:30)

Global airport association Airports Council International (ACI) has reported a 5.3% increase in August passenger traffic.

Global airport association Airports Council International (ACI) has reported a 5.3% increase in August passenger traffic.

ACI said that this was a slight increase over the 12-month growth trend of 4.7%. While international passenger traffic across airports also saw an increase of 6.7%, domestic passenger traffic increased by 4% when compared with August 2013.

European airports also saw a passenger traffic increase of 7.4% in August. According to the report, Turkish and Russian airports were the major contributors to overall growth for the region. The two airports in Moscow recorded double-digit growth of more than 30% in August.

"Despite some of the downside risks that have persisted in 2014, passenger traffic has remained relatively resilient with above average growth for the month of August."

Even African airports saw recovery in passenger traffic despite the Ebola outbreak. With overall African passenger traffic going up by 10.8%, Cairo (CAI) and Hurghada (HRG), two of Egypt's major airports, saw the traffic jump by 24% and 76.7%, respectively.

The Middle East, Latin America-Caribbean, North America and Asia-Pacific regions saw increases of 9%, 4.5%, 3.9% and 3.3%, respectively.

Air freight was also in a recovery mode with overall accumulated volumes rising by 3.6%. International freight volumes saw an increase of 7.5%. But with recession in Brazil, Latin America-Caribbean experienced a decline in volumes by 1.7% in August.

The air freight volumes at Dubai World Central (DWC) quintupled to more than 80,000t in comparison with the previous year. Asia-Pacific also recorded an 8.2% increase. Considered to be the world's largest air freight hub, Hong Kong Airport saw an 8.6% increase in volumes.

While Europe and North America growth levels were recorded at 3.3% and 2.1% respectively, Africa saw a slight increase of 0.5% in freight volume.

ACI World's economics director Rafael Echevarne Rafael Echevarne said: "Despite some of the downside risks that have persisted in 2014, such as the heightened tensions between Russia and Ukraine and the escalating geopolitical threats in the Middle East, passenger traffic has remained relatively resilient with above average growth for the month of August.

"Notwithstanding, the Ebola outbreak, if not contained in the short run, may further depress traffic flows beyond the existing routes to and from the affected areas. Similarly, air freight volumes also posted above average growth rates. Although growth in domestic freight volumes in Europe and North America showed weakness in August, international freight volumes showed robust growth in most regions, particularly at airports in the large exporting nations of the Asia-Pacific."