Air Transport World

IATA: gloomy financial picture. (International Air Transport Association) (includes related article)

NAIROBI-"The economic status of the world air-transport industry is worse than at any time during the 46-year history of modern international civil aviation." IATA Director General Gunter Eser used these words to preface this report on the industry to the 600 delegates and observers attending IATA's 47th Annual General Meeting, the first to be held in black Africa.

Eser win retire at the end of 1992 and be replaced by Pierre jeanniot, former president of Air Canada. The Nairobi AGM was particularly demanding for Eser, who had to chair the meeting in the absence of American airlines Chairman and CEO Robert Crandall, chairman of the executive committee. Crandall was unable to attend the AGM and American was unrepresented, as were Delta, United and Northwest. just over half of the 204 members sent delegates.

Eser did not mince words in describing the state of the industry-some delegates told ATW that they thought he painted too gloomy a picture. For example, he asserted that "perhaps only 20 IATA member airlines can meet their operating costs, replace their assets and finance their growth either from their own resources or from the financial markets on normal commercial terms." He forecast that the industry will report a net loss of $3.7 billion for 1991, with total capacity down by no more than 1%, average yields up by 6%, unit costs up by 5% and interest charges staying flat. …

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