New Delhi: Despite an economic slowdown and grounding of a major domestic carrier, the Indian aviation regulator expects a healthy rise in passenger traffic in 2019.
Arun Kumar, Director General of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), said capacity expansion was the core reason for growth during the subdued economic environment. Kumar said the induction of aircraft in domestic airlines in the fourth quarter of 2019 would ease fares and usher in passenger traffic growth. “Airlines are expected to add around 40 or more aircraft from October to December. This additional capacity is expected to give a boost to passenger traffic,” Kumar said. Even flights under the UDAN scheme from Hindon and other stations were accelerating the passenger traffic growth, he added.
According to Kumar, the fourth quarter of the calendar year might see a 10-15 percent rise in passenger traffic. “Overall, the domestic passenger traffic might rise 7-9 percent,” he said. Passenger traffic had contracted in April due to factors like economic slowdown, high fares, and capacity constraint. But it has gained some vigour in the past few months. In August, the traffic grew by 3.87 percent to 1.17 crore from 1.13 crore during the year-ago month. A recent International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) traffic report blamed the economic slowdown for cooling India’s air passenger traffic growth. (IANS)