The demand for Middle East airlines further fell to 82.9 percent in April, compared to the previous month’s 81.6 percent, despite mass vaccination, the International Air and Transport Association (IATA) reported. The pandemic has severely affected the aviation industry, and it’s evident that passengers are still reluctant to travel despite the mass vaccine rollout of Covid-19 taking place in the country.
According to the IATA report, the Middle East aviation sector carried even fewer passengers in April, which contributed to the further dip in numbers. The report also mentioned that the passenger traffic was down by 87.3 percent, compared to the numbers of 2019. Given the travel restrictions imposed by the government, the aviation sector still has a long way to go in terms of recovering international passenger travel.
According to experts, the Covid-19 vaccination programme was expected to have a positive impact on the aviation industry. As of June 8, around 2.2 billion people have been fully vaccinated, as reported by Our World in Data. In the UAE, 13.5 million doses of vaccine have been administered, reported the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management.
After incurring huge losses because of the pandemic, the air transport body is pushing to ease border restrictions and to restart travel. But, in the face of the resurgence of the Covid-19 cases all over the world, several countries have once again tightened their borders to fight the spread of the virus. The UAE announced that they will be suspending aircraft from three African countries after a spike of fresh Covid-19 cases was noticed.