The International Air Transport Association (IATA) urged governments in Latin America and the Caribbean region to take full advantage of the connectivity provided by aviation in order to chart a more successful future for the region.
“Latin America is ripe with possibilities,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO [pictured below] in the opening address of the Wings of Change conference in Santiago, Chile.
“It has a dynamic airline industry that has embraced cross-border consolidation to boost efficiency and competitiveness and deliver more value to customers.
“And it has a geography that is particularly reliant on air transport.” According to figures from IATA, aviation contributes $107bn in GDP to the region.
“While some countries in the region — such as Chile and Panama —recognise the value of aviation, others are erecting physical and financial barriers to success, ignoring the lessons of places like South Korea, the Gulf or Singapore, which have placed aviation connectivity at the core of their development plans,” Tyler said.
Governments across Latin America are embracing airport concessions and privatisations to speed-up infrastructure development. Previous privatisations in the region raised costs for air travel without any positive impact on efficiency or capacity.