Belfast Telegraph

Airline industry profits taking off

By John Mulligan

The global airline business will make more money this year than previously anticipated, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

It has revised its outlook for 2012, saying carriers are likely to make accumulated profits of $4.1bn (€3.1bn).

That's higher than the $1.1bn to $3bn the IATA had forecast back in June.

"The fall in airline profits from the $8.4bn that the industry earned in 2011 will be cushioned by improved airline performance," said the association.

IATA director general Tony Tyler said that the recent quantitative easing announced in the US and Japan "will take time to yield growth", especially when the European debt crisis lingers and China's growth continues to moderate.

"While some of these risks have diminished slightly, they continue to take their toll on business confidence," he added, noting that the IATA's improved outlook was a result of airlines "performing better in a difficult environment".

"The industry has re-shaped itself to cope by investing in new fleets, carefully managing capacity and consolidating," he said.