The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has called on the Italian government to work together with aviation to deliver economic prosperity and a more sustainable air transport industry in the region.
Aviation supports 714,000 jobs and contributes €46 billion to the Italian economy, accounting for roughly 2.7% of Italy’s GDP.
IATA has urged the government to pursue a collaborative and competitive air transport agenda, which it said could create 200,000 more jobs and nearly €20 billion ($22.3 billion) in additional GDP by 2037.
The more competitive its aviation sector, the greater the benefits to Italy in terms of prosperity and employment
“The strength of Italy’s manufacturing exports, its services, and its tourism industry relies on air transport,” said Rafael Schvartzman, IATA Regional Vice President for Europe.
“The more competitive its aviation sector, the greater the benefits to Italy in terms of prosperity and employment.
“The government can create a more competitive industry by reducing taxes and ensuring the process for deciding infrastructure charges is more transparent.”
Schvartzman’s comments come following the publication of an IATA study, Italy Air Transport Regulatory Competitiveness Indicators.
The report found that although the aviation sector in Italy is competitive in terms of passenger and cargo facilitation, high airport taxes and charges on passengers make it a more expensive place to do business and “less attractive choice for tourists”.
According to IATA analysis, Italy’s application of Smarter Regulation principles falls short of that of its European peers, with airport charging processes lacking in transparency and not aligned with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) principles.
Recommendations to maximize the economic and social benefits of air transport include removing or reducing the Council Tax, transparency and fairness on the issue of airport charges, and implementing the National Airspace Strategy.
IATA also called on the Italian government to encourage initiatives that will further combat CO2 emissions.
“Implementing the national airspace strategy will reduce costs and CO2 emissions. And carbon can be still further reduced if the government takes the lead to support the development of sustainable aviation fuels,” added Schvartzman.