(MENAFN) Annual growth in aviation market of the Middle East was the worst growth worldwide in 2017, since it was the only aviation market that witnessed a slowdown, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
Middle East carriers' traffic increased 6.6 percent last year but the region's share of global traffic (9.5 percent) fell for the first time in 20 years.
The temporary ban on large portable electronic devices in the aircraft cabin as well as the proposed US travel bans affecting some countries in the region led to the market's hardest hit in segment to and from North America.
"2017 got off to a very strong start and largely stayed that way throughout the year, sustained by a broad-based pick-up in economic conditions. While the underlying economic outlook remains supportive in 2018, rising cost inputs, most notably fuel, suggest we are unlikely to see the same degree of demand stimulation from lower fares that occurred in the first part of 2017," said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA's director general and CEO.
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