ZURICH, April 3 Global air travel demand
continued to recover in February on the back of stronger
business optimism, particularly in emerging markets, the
International Air Transport Association (IATA) said on
"Demand for air travel continues to rise on economic
optimism and improved business confidence," IATA Chief Executive
Tony Tyler said in a statement.
"Much of the growth is concentrated on emerging markets.
Europe continues to be a laggard."
Tyler said February's 3.7 percent growth rate masked the
fact that passenger demand had been growing at an annualised
rate of 9 percent since October, almost double the rate during
the first nine months of 2012.
IATA added that the industry load factor stood at a record
high of 77.1 percent as a result of airlines carefully managing
capacity expansion, helping to keep the industry profitable
despite high oil prices.
On Tuesday, the airline industry body predicted the global
air cargo market is set to extend a slow recovery unless a fresh
blow to confidence from the euro zone reverses the trend.
IATA represents 240 airlines operating 84 percent of global
air traffic. Domestic flights are excluded from its data.