Brexit uncertainty, tariffs and trade wars contributed to a “soft” start to the summer peak flying season for airlines, new data reveals.

Global passenger demand in July was up by 3.6% year-on-year but down from the 5.1% growth recorded in June.

International passenger demand rose just 2.7% over July 2018, against the 5.3% growth recorded in June.

Iata director general and CEO said Alexandre de Juniac said:

“July’s performance marked a soft start to the peak passenger demand season.

“Tariffs, trade wars, and uncertainty over Brexit are contributing to a weaker demand environment than we saw in 2018.

“At the same time the trend of moderate capacity increases is helping to achieve record load factors.”

Meanwhile, the aviation industry is working hard to ensure that the environmental costs of all travel are minimised, Iata stressed.

“The carbon footprint of the average air journey this year is half what it would have been in 1990,” said de Juniac. “From 2020 overall net emissions will be capped.

“And realising the full potential of sustainable aviation fuels will play a major role in our 2050 target to cut overall net emissions to half 2005 levels.”

But he added: “Unfortunately, with a host of environmental taxes planned or under consideration in Europe, it seems that governments are more interested in taxing aviation than partnering with industry to make it sustainable.”