ACI World confirms that airports are set for big losses in 2020
ACI World has published its fifth COVID-19 economic impact analysis revealing the devastating effect on the airport industry and the prospects for recovery.
The Advisory Bulletin, The impact of COVID-19 on the airport business, reveals the global airport industry will record a reduction of more than six billion passengers by the end of 2020 compared to the pre-COVID-19 forecast for 2020, representing a decline of 64.2% of global passenger traffic.
Europe and the Middle East are predicted to be the two most impacted regions – with declines above -70% compared to the projected baseline, while Asia-Pacific is forecasted to close the year with a 60% decline, its recovery being helped by the large domestic markets of countries like China and India.
ACI World expected the airport industry to generate about $172 billion in 2020 but the COVID-19 crisis impact on airport revenues is likely to see that figure reduced by 65% or $111.8 billion to $60.2 billion.
ACI World has developed scenarios exploring the potential recovery trajectory and, under the baseline scenario, domestic passenger traffic is expected to recover to 2019 levels by 2023 with the recovery of international passenger traffic following in 2024.
“The pandemic has resulted in a full-scale transportation crisis with the aviation brought to a virtual halt in April following lockdowns imposed in many countries in the second half of March,” says ACI World director general, Luis Felipe de Oliveira.
“We are now seeing some positive signs and prospects are slightly better for recovery but there is still a long way to go. One thing is certain, the world will be different after this pandemic.
“Recent announcements of successful vaccine trials are offering hope for a sustained recovery, but vaccination campaigns will take time and the industry needs government assistance and policy support now to lay a solid foundation for recovery.
“A consistent approach to testing should be implemented now to promote travel and do away with restrictive quarantine measures with a coordinated and risk-based approach to combining testing and vaccination introduced going forward.
“Tests and vaccines together will play a key role on the industry recovery, providing passengers with a safe travel environment and foster confidence in air travel.
ACI World also found that, in the long run, it is predicted that the global traffic may take up to two decades to return to previously projected traffic levels.