Lack of air traffic management capacity may Indian airport projects: IATA

In its latest air transport industry forecast for 2011, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has warned that the enormous anticipated expansion of air traffic in India, which has fuelled record aircraft orders, could be cut short by insufficient airport and air traffic management capacity.

This mismatch between demand and capacity, according to the IATA, would appear to be a local phenomenon, for Giovanni Bisignani, IATA's director general & CEO, notes, "Parts of the world are effectively managing infrastructure development to anticipate and meet demand - particularly the Middle East and China."

However, with an 8.3% average annual growth rate (AAGR), India occupies the second spot among seven Asian countries that feature among the region's top ten freight markets. The others are: China (10.8%), India (8.3%), Republic of Korea (8.2%), Vietnam (7.5%), Sri Lanka (6.8%), Pakistan (6.7%) and Malaysia (6.2%).

The fastest growing Middle Eastern markets are expected to be Qatar (6.9%) and Saudi Arabia (6.2%), the agency said.

According to the forecast, the global air transport industry is expected to handle 36 million tonnes of international freight, which will be 7.5 million tonnes more than in 2006