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Aviation Industry Takes Off Again with $27.4b Profit Globally

 By William Emmanuel Ukpoju 

The global airline industry has finally emerged from the COVID-19 storm, returning to profitability in 2023 after three years of significant losses.

According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), commercial airlines reported a net profit of $27.4 billion in 2023, a significant improvement from the $3.5 billion loss in 2022.

IATA’s Director General, Willie Walsh, praised the industry’s successful recovery but warned that profit margins remain “wafer thin.” Walsh highlighted the challenges the industry still faces, including fierce competition, lack of competition in the upstream supply chain, onerous regulation, and persistent supply chain problems.

Despite these challenges, the IATA expects industry revenues to reach a historic high of $996 billion in 2024, with passenger revenue exceeding $744 billion, a 22% increase from 2019. Net profits are expected to climb to $30.5 billion in 2024, but Walsh notes that this is still not enough to build financial resilience and invest in a more sustainable future.

“The airline industry is on the path to sustainable profits, but there is still a big gap to cover,” Walsh said. “Our profits are barely enough for a coffee in many parts of the world.”

Valuechain reports that the airline industry’s return to profitability in 2023 is a testament to its resilience and determination. However, the industry’s thin profit margins and ongoing challenges highlight the need for continued efforts to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and invest in sustainable growth.

As the industry looks to the future, especially with regards to Nigeria, stakeholders must prioritize innovation, customer experience, and environmental sustainability to ensure long-term success.

With projected revenues reaching historic highs in 2024, the airline industry is poised for growth, but it must remain vigilant in the face of ongoing challenges and work towards building a more sustainable and profitable future for all stakeholders.

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