The airline industry has spoken out against the federal government’s decision to cut operations at the Mexico City International Airport (AICM) starting next October.
The National Chamber of Air Transport (Canaero) warned that the resolution, published this Thursday in the Official Gazette of the Federation (DOF), will seriously affect passengers, national and international destinations, and employees and investors in the aviation sector.
“This unexpected reduction that is intended to be applied as of next October 29, implies the need to carry out a massive cancellation of flights that includes passengers who already have purchased tickets, an affectation that originates from that act of authority that is unrelated to the airlines,” the agency said in a statement.
He added that the measure, which he described as “forced”, may cause ticket prices to increase, as there will be an excess demand due to the reduction in available seats.
This Thursday, the Federal Civil Aviation Agency (AFAC) published a resolution by which it reduces from 52 to 43 the maximum operations per hour at the capital’s airport as of October 29.
The regulator said that the measure is due to the saturation that the AICM is experiencing and that it was taken for a security issue.
In this regard, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) questioned the government’s decision and called on the authorities to jointly seek alternative measures that take into account the negative impact for passengers, air operations, connectivity, tourism and competitiveness, as well as compliance with the international commitments acquired by the country.
“This government decision does not take into account the interests of consumers nor does it respect the necessary consultative procedure with operators and users, especially at the country’s main airport. These measures must be taken with the greatest technical and operational rigor, based on expert studies and analysis”, said Peter Cerdá, IATA regional vice president for the Americas.
In the resolution published in the DOF, the AFAC said that it carried out two studies on the capacity in both AICM terminals, in which it detected that the maximum number of passengers that can be optimally served was exceeded.
However, IATA questioned the methodology used by the authorities to determine the capacity of the capital airport.
Added to the complaints were airlines such as Aeroméxico, which said that the measure will affect passengers, in the first instance, as well as workers in the industry and will impact the attraction of new investments that depend on having legal certainty and air connectivity. adequate.
Likewise, Volaris pointed out the need to carry out studies with a high level of technical rigor, as well as to maintain open and collaborative communication, in addition to guaranteeing equity and avoiding any form of discrimination in the implementation of these measures.
The airline said that it is essential to have a sufficient adjustment period to minimize the effects both on customers who already have an upcoming flight, and on the country’s connectivity.
The College of Aviator Pilots of Mexico also ruled against the measure, which considered that it should be postponed until there is a working group within the schedule committee of the airport itself, as established by the norm and best practices. on an international level.
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“The haste with which this new reduction is being announced, which was decided unilaterally and arbitrarily by the aviation authorities, without yet having the consensus of the airlines that use the slots, only causes a climate of unnecessary tension. which adds to the problems of the sector in the country,” said the agency.
With this cut made official this Thursday, the federal authority has reduced operations at the AICM by almost 30 percent in the last year.
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