Created in 2016 on the initiative of Atout France and Groupe ADP, in partnership with the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development, the new Observatoire de la Connectivité aérienne has made public its first study.
This study provides an overview and confirms the major role played by international air transport flows. They represent a strategic driver enabling France each year to welcome more international tourists and thus reach the target of 100 million international visitors by 2020.
With worldwide airline traffic expected to increase by about 4.5%–6% per year over the next 20 years, the Observatoire de la connectivité aérienne took a closer look at the ten main markets for long-haul traffic to the European Union and the Schengen area: Brazil, Canada, China, India, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Russia, South Korea and the United States.
20 million additional arrivals by 2025
The ten markets analysed account for more than half of the world’s population and are they manage 55 million airport arrivals in Europe each year. This figure is expected to increase by 40% to reach 75 million forecast arrivals by 2025, ie a potential of more than 20 million additional arrivals.This new influx will be distributed between the main European tourist destinations. Four of those countries will account for 85% of future growth: the United States, Russia, China, and India, which will see the strongest growth, accounting for over 15% of the increase to come.
France in the top three
Today, close to 60% of travellers coming from the top ten major long-haul source markets fly non-stop to their destination, whereas the others pass through a hub airport.
France captures 12% of overall arrivals, with an annual flow of 6.6 million arrivals. Its importance is even more meaningful when it comes to non-stop flights, with a market share of close to 13%. France has established itself, since 2011, as the third biggest destination amongst the ten main long-haul markets, and owes this strategic position to a very balanced traffic profile. It always appears in the Top 3 for each of the ten major long- haul source markets, except for the United States and Russia, where it ranks fourth.
A need to work together
Whilst the competition between major airports and cities has never been so intense, against a background of consolidation in the air transport industry and the strong development of airports in Asia and the Arabian Peninsula, capturing new air routes and enhancing current destinations, following in the footsteps of the recent bilateral agreement with China, is more than ever necessary.
Against this background, by proposing a very detailed focus on each of the ten main long-haul source markets, the Observatoire de la connectivité aérienne urges all players involved in transport, tourism and local government to do more together to realise their full potential.
Based on actual traffic data as opposed to estimates, the work of the Observatoire de la connectivité aérienne is long-term and will be updated each year in order to monitor market changes, thereby helping stakeholders better focus their actions. Actions that can have very positive economic effects can be very beneficial to the economy as today, efficient connectivity is an essential part of the attractiveness of a country or a city.