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Air Transport Supports 65.5m Jobs, $2.7tr in Economic Activity

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

A new research released by the Air Transport Action Group (ATAG) has revealed that the global air transport sector supports 65.5 million jobs and $2.7 trillion in global economic activity.

The report, Aviation: Benefits Beyond Borders, explores the fundamental role civil aviation plays for today’s society and addresses the economic, social and environmental impacts of this global industry.

Launching the report at the ATAG Global Sustainable Aviation Summit in Geneva, ATAG’s Executive Director, Michael Gill, said: “Let’s take a step back and think about how advances in air transport have changed the way people and businesses connect with each other – the reach we have today is extraordinary. More people in more parts of the world than ever before are taking advantage of safe, fast and efficient travel.”

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“There are over 10 million women and men working within the industry to make sure 120,000 flights and 12 million passengers a day are guided safely through their journeys. The wider supply chain, flow-on impacts and jobs in tourism made possible by air transport show that at least 65.5 million jobs and 3.6% of global economic activity are supported by our industry.”

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The report also looks at two future scenarios for growth in air traffic and related jobs and economic benefits. With an open, free-trade approach, the growth in air transport will support some 97.8 million jobs and $5.7 trillion in economic activity in 2036. However, if governments create a more fragmented world with isolationism and protectionist policies, over 12 million fewer jobs and $1.2 trillion less in economic activity would be supported by air transport.

“By working with one another, learning from each other’s cultures and trading openly, we not only create a stronger economic outlook, but we also continue the conditions for peaceful interaction across the globe. Aviation is the key driver for this positive connectivity.”

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According to the report, over 10 million people work directly for the industry itself, while air travel carries 35 percent of world trade by value ($6.0 trillion worth in 2017), but less than 1 percent by volume (62 million tonnes in 2017), with 57 percent of world tourists travel to their destinations by air.

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Modupe Gbadeyanka is a fast-rising journalist with Business Post Nigeria. Her passion for journalism is amazing. She is willing to learn more with a view to becoming one of the best pen-pushers in Nigeria. Her role models are the duo of CNN's Richard Quest and Christiane Amanpour.

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