Global aviation industry losses are estimated at around $201 billion for the period 2020-2022 due to the suspension of international travel. The industry may face another difficult year before it can recover from the impact of Covid-19 and become profitable in 2023.
After the Covid pandemic hit the global aviation industry with losses in the order of $138 billion in 2020, losses for 2021 are estimated at $52 billion, said William M Walsh, chief executive of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), in its statement on Monday. The loss for 2022 is expected to fall to $12 billion.
“We have passed the deepest point of the crisis. Although serious problems remain, the road to recovery is emerging. Our resilience will be tested as we work together to ensure aviation safety, manage Covid risks and make aviation sustainable,” he said.
While freight demand has already recovered and is around 8% above pre-covid levels, passenger demand is gradually receding from the impact of Covid due to the staggered easing of travel restrictions international and complicated cross-border vaccine rules.
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Passenger demand for 2021 is expected to reach 40% of 2019 levels around 18 months after the shock, data from IATA’s Monthly Statistics reveals. Demand is expected to reach 61% in 2022. The recovery in passenger demand has been largely driven by domestic travel due to easing restrictions in this regard in the majority of countries.
Globally, the aviation industry has received around $243 billion in financial aid so far, helping it stay afloat.
In 2021, Europe and Asia-Pacific were the worst performing regions with losses of $20.9 billion and $11.2 billion, respectively, out of total global losses of $52 billion. North America is expected to be the only region to make a profit in 2022, while other regions will significantly reduce their losses.
The pandemic has become the biggest and longest shock to hit the aviation sector in terms of the decline the industry has seen in passenger-kilometres flown worldwide, surpassing other serious crises. such as the 9/11 terrorist attacks and the Great Recession, according to IATA data.
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