Africa carriers’ traffic growth in 2023 outpaced American, European peers — IATA

African carriers’ traffic grew 38.7% in 2023, thus exceeding the growth of Latin and North American and European airlines, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) said.
According to IATA, the recovery in air travel continued in December 2023 and total 2023 traffic edged even closer to matching pre-pandemic demand. “African airlines’ annual traffic rose 38.7% in 2023 versus the prior year,” IATA reported, thus outranking Latin America (28.6%), North America (28.3%), and Europe (22%). Load factor for African airlines climbed 0.2 percentage points to 71.9%, the lowest among regions. December 2023 traffic for African airlines rose 9.5% over December 2022, IATA said. However, Africa’s share of the air passenger market remained low compared to other regions, at 2.1%.
The poor quality of road networks and lack of railways in many African countries often make air transport the practical choice for cargo, too. Air travel is one of the most widely used, versatile and advantageous modes of transport compared with other options like road, water and railway. Within the logistics sector, air transport has been gaining ground and becoming one of the most demanded and used transport options. Among all regions, Asia-Pacific airlines posted the strongest growth year-on-year at 126.1%. “That puts the industry on a very solid ground for success in 2024. But, with continued —and in some cases intensifying — instability in geopolitics and economic forces, little should be taken for granted in the months ahead,” IATA report concluded.