International air travel in 2021 will only represent 22% of 2019 levels: IATA
International air travel remains in a deep crisis and will only be 22% in 2021 from 2019 levels, Conrad Clifford, deputy managing director of global airlines body IATA, said on Monday.
“The lack of harmonized border measures, restrictions and procedures is a major cause of the failure to restart (international) travel,” he said during a press briefing here at the 77th annual general meeting of the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
According to aviation industry sources, barely 20% of pre-Covid international flights are currently operated from India.
Regular international passenger flights have been suspended in India since March 23, 2020, due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, special flights have been allowed under “air bubble” deals India has with around 28 countries.
Under an air bubble deal, airlines of one country are allowed to operate limited international passenger flights to the territory of the other with specific restrictions.
When IATA analyzed the entry restrictions of the top 50 air transport markets in the world, it was observed that seven countries have no restrictions, five have no entry restrictions but you may still need to quarantine, Clifford mentioned here.
“In the meantime, 38 have restrictions of a baffling variety,” he said.
For example, of the 38 countries where restrictions are still in place, 24 differentiate based on some sort of country risk categorization, but there is little consistency in the risk categorization, Clifford said.
“The same country can appear on the green list of one state, the orange list of another state and the red list of another state,” he added.
Lufthansa Group CEO Carsten Spohr said here on Sunday that the restriction on air traffic between India and Germany is hurting both economies and the airline group is anxiously awaiting the Indian government to allow more flights. between the two countries.
India’s aviation regulator, DGCA, currently allows Lufthansa to operate only 10 weekly flights between India and Germany, after accusing the airline in September 2020 of benefiting from an “unfair distribution” of traffic.
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