About a month and a half from the end of the first quarter of the year, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) predicts that, by March, there will be "a reduction of 6.4 to 19.6 million passengers compared to what the airlines had designed "." This amounts to a potential reduction of four billion dollars (3.7 billion euros) to five billion dollars (4.6 billion euros) in gross operating revenue for airlines worldwide, "said the ICAO in a statement released on Thursday. Before the outbreak of the new coronavirus, called Covid-19, explained the ICAO, the airlines intended to increase capacity in 9% on international routes to and from China, for the first three months of the year.
A scenario now quite different from the projected one: "about 70 airlines canceled all international flights to and from mainland China and another 50 airlines reduced air operations", reads the same note.
Flight cancellations resulted in an 80% reduction in foreign air capacity for travelers to and from China and a 40% reduction in air capacity for Chinese airlines.
Estimates released by ICAO do not include the special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau, or Taiwan.
Macau International Airport told Lusa that from February 1 to 9, a drop in the number of passengers and flights of around 80% and 57%, respectively.
During this period marked by restrictions due to the outbreak of the new Chinese coronavirus, only about 50 thousand passengers passed through the airport, in a territory that receives more than three million monthly tourists and which is the world capital of the game.
ICAO also predicts that due to reductions in Chinese travelers, Japan could lose $ 1.29 billion (1.18 billion euros) in tourist revenue and Thailand $ 1.15 billion (1.05 billion) euros).