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Regional Differences in International Airline Operating Economics: 2008 and 2009

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This circular has been prepared pursuant to ICAO Assembly Resolution A37-20, Appendix G, which requests the Council to instruct the Secretary General to issue periodically "a study on regional differences in the level of international air transport operating costs, analysing how differences in operations and input prices may affect their levels and the impact that changes in costs may have on air transport tariffs". This study on Regional Differences in International Airline Operating Economics: 2008 and 2009 succeeds the study which covered the years 2006 and 2007 and was published in 2010 (Circular 327-AT/189) and five previous studies covering the years 1992 to 2005. Prior to that, similar studies were published annually under the title Regional Differences in Fares, Rates and Costs for International Air Transport, which covered the years 1976 to 1992. The studies are now published biennially, although data have continued to be collected and analysed on an annual basis. This circular focuses on the years 2008 and 2009 and makes some comparisons with 2007, the last year for which data are available in Circular 327-AT/189.

For 17 international route groups, comprising all international routes, passenger, freight and mail revenue yield data are presented in Chapter 2 for scheduled services. With reference to the same route groups, regional differences in the costs related to the scheduled service passenger yields are presented in Chapter 3. The major causes of regional differences in costs are identified in Chapter 4. In Chapters 2 and 3, the 2009 results are compared with those for 2007.

The sources of data used in the study are given in Appendix 1, together with information on the sample sizes on which revenue and cost data are based. The method of analysis used in the study is presented in Appendix 2, together with information on the margins of uncertainty, a factor which should be borne in mind when considering the results of studies of this nature. The questionnaires and information on responses appear in Appendix 3.

Unless indicated otherwise, all references to "cents" in this circular mean "U.S. cents" and all references to "dollars" mean "U.S. dollars".