India to become third-largest air passenger market by 2026: IATA

New Delhi, Nov 26 (IANS) The global air transportation body on Thursday predicted that India will become the third-largest air passenger market by 2026.

As per the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) updated passenger growth forecast, India will displace Britain as the third-largest market by 2026.

The forecast said China is expected to overtake the United States as the world’s largest passenger market by 2029.

The forecast projected that globally total passenger numbers will reach seven billion by 2034 with a 3.8 percent average annual growth in demand taking 2014 as baseline year.

Previously, IATA forecast that global air passenger count will reach 7.4 billion by 2034 based on a 4.1 percent average annual growth rate.

The global air transportation body said that the revised result reflect a negative trend in the world economy which is expected to dampen demand for air transport, especially slower economic growth projections for China.

“Economic and political events over the last year have impacted some of the fundamentals for growth. As a result, we expect some 400 million fewer people to be travelling in 2034 than we did at this time last year,” said Tony Tyler, drector general and chief executive of IATA.

Furthermore, the forecast places India as the third fastest growing market in terms of additional passengers per year during the period under review.

India is expected to add 275 million new passengers taking its total passenger numbers to 378 million.

In terms of routes, Indonesia-East Timor will be the fastest growing at 13.9 percent, followed by India-Hong Kong at 10.4 percent.

Globally, in 20 years time, aviation is expected to support around 105 million jobs and $6 trillion in GDP.

Currently, aviation helps sustain 58 million jobs and $2.4 trillion in economic activity.

In 2014, 3.3 billion passengers flew. The number of passengers in 2015 is expected to reach 3.5 billion.

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