Response to IATA comments on airport charges
All parts of the ecosystem must work together for the benefit of passengers and the communities we serve
Montreal, 7 December 2022 – In response to statements made at the 2022 Global Media Day of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) regarding airport charges, ACI World Director General Luis Felipe de Oliveira gave the following comments:
“By its nature aviation relies on collaboration. All parts of the ecosystem—airports, airlines, ground handlers and other stakeholders—must work together for the benefit of passengers and the communities we serve. Attacking industry partners does not reflect the collaborative spirit the industry needs for the common goal of providing safe, reliable, and efficient air transport.
“Like airlines and other areas of this ecosystem, airports are businesses too and affected by cost rises in the industry outside of their control. It is a reality we’re all facing—high costs of energy, inflation, and staff shortages. Airports had a 49% drop in aeronautical revenues during 2020-2021, and costs have gone up while revenues are not keeping pace. With continued economic headwinds and global passenger traffic expecting a loss of 33.1% in 2022*, the financial stress felt by airports cannot be absorbed.
“It is important to remember that airports are infrastructure-intensive businesses—meaning they have unavoidable high fixed costs. What’s more, significant investment will be needed going forward to meet demand and transition to sustainable energy sources. Airlines have been able to increase their tariffs during the last year, which is different from the airports that need to follow regulatory frameworks.
“In the end, aviation is one ecosystem. We must focus on the benefits to passengers and communities. And for this all parts of the ecosystem need to be healthy.”
*Compared to projected baseline
Airports Council International (ACI), the trade association of the world’s airports, was founded in 1991 with the objective of fostering cooperation among its member airports and other partners in world aviation, including the International Civil Aviation Organization, the International Air Transport Association and the Civil Air Navigation Services Organization. In representing the best interests of airports during key phases of policy development, ACI makes a significant contribution toward ensuring a global air transport system that is safe, secure, efficient and environmentally sustainable. As of January 2022, ACI serves 717 members, operating 1950 airports in 185 countries.
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