On the 24th of March 2020, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) reported a deeper than earlier anticipated financial hit to the global air transport industry. The financial hit in terms of declining passenger revenues is expected to plummet by a staggering US$252 billion (44% below the year 2019), stemming from increased travel restrictions in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and slower industry recovery in an expected global economic recession after the containment of the pandemic.
This is in contrast to the earlier estimate quoted on the 5th of March 2020, in which the trade body had placed the figure at up to US$113 billion. An earlier analysis released in February, which had only taken into account air transport markets associated with China, had placed the figure at US$29.3 billion.
According to IATA Director General Alexandre de Juniac, “The airline industry faces its gravest crisis. Within a matter of a few weeks, our previous worst case scenario is looking better than our latest estimates. But without immediate government relief measures, there will not be an industry left standing."