General business context

The air transport industry and the trend in airport traffic 

In 2013 passenger traffic at worldwide airports grew by 3.9%, thanks especially to a 5.2% increase in the international component. Despite the relatively limited economic recovery and the high cost fuel (whose price rose by 4.1% 3 in 2013), the rise in air transport – especially in emerging countries – allowed the related industry to achieve healthy growth4.

Of the 4.3 billion passengers worldwide, the OECD 5 countries made up around 60% of the total, with Europe and North America each contributing about 30%. Asia and the Pacific contribute roughly 25% of total passengers 6.

In 2013, passengers in North America numbered 1.2 billion, an increase of 1.3% on the previous year. Slower growth with respect to the global context reflects the preponderance in this area of domestic traffic, whose growth in 2013 (+0.6%5) was less dynamic than international traffic (+4.1%5 with respect to 2012).

In Europe there were around 1.3 billion passengers, an increase of 2.6% on the previous year, thanks to the solid growth in international traffic (+3.6%5).

Asia, with about 1.1 billion passengers, made a strong contribution to worldwide traffic growth with an increase of 7.2%5.

In South America, traffic was up by 4.8%5 to about 350 million passengers, while the Middle East (166 million passengers) showed a 10.1% increase thanks to record growth in international traffic at airports like Dubai and Abu Dhabi5.

The favorable context in terms of passenger volumes was reflected in a 5.2% increase in revenue generated by the air transport sector, which amounted to $ 566 billion for the year.

The trend in motorway traffic 

In Italy, the Group’s largest motorway market, traffic decreased by a total of 1.7%, with heavy traffic showing the worst performance (-2.3%) due to the ongoing economic difficulties. Light traffic declined by 1.5% 7.

In the United States, traffic from January to December showed a relatively minor decrease (-0.2%) with respect to the previous year 8.


3. Source: BLOOMBERG, Crude Oil WT

4. Source: IATA - Industry Financial Forecast, December 2013

5. OECD countries excluding Japan

6. Source: ACI PaxFlash and FreightFlash, December 2013

7. Source: AISCAT, December 2013

8. Source: Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)