Meeting Global Air Service Demand Requires Coordinated Response

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Airports Council International (ACI) World calls on governments and industry worldwide to work together to accommodate soaring air traffic demand and allow airports to grow sustainably.

Ms. Angela Gittens, Director General of ACI World, who spoke at the Airport Chief Executives’ Symposium held recently, underlines the fact that airports are part of an industry that delivers significant economic and social benefits.

Ms. Gittens says: “To meet the challenges posed by recent forecasts for growth in demand for air services, airports require permission to operate and grow, not only from regulatory authorities and governments but also from the local and broader communities they serve.”

She explains: “Stakeholders across the industry are in broad agreement that investment in airport infrastructure is critical to the global economy and global and national connectivity especially in achieving the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals. Given this, the injection of private investment has been a successful option for airports in a growing number of countries.”

She adds: “We support the development of quality airport infrastructure commensurate with the level of projected growth. Moreover, we encourage airports to use this common understanding as a platform to present the economic and social benefits of aviation to their regulators, to investment banks and to aid agencies as they seek to invest in economic development projects that are sustainable.”

Airport networks was identified as an important role in ensuring the economic sustainability of Regional airports. The ACI Policy Brief on airport networks and the sustainability of small airports shows that the sustainable operation and development of the world’s smaller airports remains a challenge.

“When a network approach is pursued, cross-subsidies from profitable larger airports are often key to the sustainability of smaller airports, which in turn provide essential benefits in terms of safety, social and economic development, and positive externalities to airlines users of the network, says Ms. Gittens, adding: “To assist airports in their role as environmental stewards, ACI provides tools for their performance and advocates the right policies at local, regional and global level to support that balance of economic and social development with environment protection that are the pillars of sustainability.”

Photo Caption: Ms. Angela Gittens, DG, ACI World

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