Civil flights over Ukraine aren’t likely to resume before 2029. Besides Ukraine, Moldova, Belarus, and Russia will also have to wait 7 years.
These are the conclusions of the spring 2023 forecast published by the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation (Eurocontrol).
"No return to "normal" routing (prior closure of Ukrainian and Russian airspaces) by the end of the seven-year horizon," the forecast emphasizes.
Other than the flight ban, among the key factors affecting the forecast for the recovery of the airline industry, the experts name high energy prices and the cost-of-living crisis. According to the analysts, these can lower travel demand.
Eurocontrol also expects the air traffic of the EU countries to return to 2019 levels only by 2025. Previously, analysts supposed this would happen already this year.
Before the full-scale war, Ukraine generated 3.3% of the total passenger flights in Europe and 0.8% of the total global flights. Since then, the infrastructure and businesses have sustained billions of dollars in losses.
As was reported earlier, the world’s largest Antonov An-225 Mriya cargo aircraft was destroyed at the beginning of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine on February 27, 2022, at the Hostomel airport, where it was stationed for repair after a commercial flight to Denmark. The former head of the Antonov State Enterprise was charged with criminal negligence. The aircraft is planned to be rebuilt after Ukraine wins the war with Russia.