UAE airports forecast 6.3% passenger growth in 2017 despite headwinds
Despite sluggish global economic growth, low oil prices, ‘Trumponomics’ and Brexit, the UAE will lead Middle East passenger growth in 2017 with an annual increase of more than 6.3%, according to estimates from the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
However, aviation-related discussions during Arabian Travel Market this year will no doubt be dominated by the recent US-led ban on electronic devices and the repercussions for regional airlines.
Aviation features heavily in the seminar programme at ATM 2017, held between 24-27 April in Dubai World Trade Centre. The sessions are being moderated by John Strickland, Director, JLS Consulting, who, with 34 years of industry experience, is an authority on the business models of regional, global, legacy and low cost carriers.
Strickland said: “2017 presents a much more challenging picture for the airline industry in the Middle East, particularly in light of the recent electronics ban enforced by the US and UK.”
The ban includes tablets, laptops, eReaders and anything that measures larger than 16cm x 9.3cm (6.9 inches x 3.66 inches).
Airlines affected by the US ban include: Royal Jordanian Airlines, Egypt Air, Turkish Airlines, Saudi Arabian Airlines, Kuwait Airways, Royal Air Maroc, Qatar Airways, Emirates and Etihad Airways. While the UK ban includes: British Airways, EasyJet, Jet2.com, Monarch, Thomas Cook, Thomson, Turkish Airlines, Pegasus Airways, Atlas-Global Airlines, Middle East Airlines, Egyptair, Royal Jordanian, Tunis Air and Saudia.
Overall the policy affects about 50 flights a day to the US, meaning the ban could impact over 15,000 passengers daily.