Sunday, 3 June 2018

US Trade wars are bad for business warn aviation bosses

The increasing tensions over the looming trade wars the US looks set to wage against the rest of the world are causing great concern in the aviation world. Global airlines and aviation executives warned on Sunday that such international trade disputes could damage the entire aviation business.  

The current trade disputes from the US government have ranged from threats of tariffs on products from China to actual duties imposed on steel and aluminium from nations that had once been the closest allies of the US, from the European Union, UK, Canada and Mexico. Each has responded accordingly and imposed tariffs and duties on a range of products from the US.  

“Any measures that reduce trade and probably consequently limit passenger travel are bad news,” Alexandre de Juniac, director general of the International Air Transport Association, told news agency Reuters during IATA’s annual meeting, held in Sydney, Australia. 

American Airlines boss, Doug Parker said, “We always get concerned when you start to see tensions elevate around global trade and free trade,” 

As oil prices look very likely to increase, at least in the short term, along with the increased uncertainty over trade, there is a very real possibility that business travel will see a significant decrease. Gloria Guevara Manzo, chief executive of the World Travel and Tourism Council said, "(Business Travellers) need to wait and see what happens – will their business be impacted, do they need to diversify, go some other places. War in trade is not good,” she said. 

"There has already been a negative reaction to the steel and aluminium sanctions imposed on the European Union, which has seen the cancellation of one, admittedly relatively small, conference due to be held in the US at the end of the year." A leading UK business travel organiser told us on Sunday and warned there could be more cancellations or relocations to be announced.

“We are in a worldwide industry here,” said Eric Schulz, the Chief Commercial Officer told reporters. “We see it in a negative way because it is putting borders and putting constraints for everybody, including our customers.”