International passenger demand was up 6.7% during the first four months of this year while cargo grew at a slower pace, said IATA in a May 31 story (subscribers only) in Aviation Daily. IATA Director General and CEO Giovanni Bisignani says that the word for the first four months of the year was stability; passenger demand was better than expected, and freight demand is growing, but showing much more price sensitivity.
"The cargo business is still growing, but competition with other modes of transport is severe," he says. Bisignani says that a strong global economy has added to a loss of cargo revenues to sea shipping, which is taking a greater piece of the pie.
Bisignani is optimistic about revenues, saying airlines are emerging into profitability for the first time in six years. The move to simplify operations is paying off, he says. IATA will release an updated financial forecast for the world's airlines on June 4 at its annual general meeting in Vancouver.