IF passenger traffic does not start recovering by the end of the year, nearly 200 airports in Europe could face insolvency in the coming months.
This announcement comes from airport’s body, ACI Europe, on Tuesday, October 27, who estimated 193 European hubs are considered “at-risk airports”.
Although it is most likely to be smaller airports affected by the decrease in passenger traffic this year, as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, it is worth noting that larger airports are also “burning through cash at an unsustainable rate,” according to ACI Europe, who represent over 500 of a total 740 airports in Europe (which have paying passengers).
An ACI spokeswoman, speaking about the nearly 200 airports that could face insolvency in the coming months, told Reuters: “Airports at risk are mainly smaller regional ones with fewer than 5 million travellers each year, where closure would have an outsized impact on [277,000] local jobs.”
“Larger European airports are also burning through cash at an unsustainable rate, with the top 20 European airports having added 16 billion euros ($18.91 billion) of debt — equivalent to nearly 60% of their revenues in a normal year.” ACI said.
ACI data showed that passenger traffic at European airports had decreased 73% year-on-year in September, with around 172.5 million passengers lost.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the total volume of lost passengers since January 2020 is now 1.29 billion.
ACI Europe director-general Olivier Jankovec said in a statement: “The figures published today paint a dramatically bleak picture. Eight months into the crisis, all of Europe’s airports are burning through cash to remain open, with revenues far from covering the costs of operations, let alone capital costs.”
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