DALLAS — The International Air Transport Association (IATA) strongly opposes the Mexican Government’s decision to reduce Mexico City International Airport’s (MEX) capacity to 43 operations per hour.
The international aviation body urges authorities to reconsider this unilateral action, warning of negative consequences for passengers, air operations, connectivity, tourism, and competitiveness. According to Cerdá, the focus should be on modernizing infrastructure rather than restricting operations.
Peter Cerdá, IATA’s Regional Vice President for the Americas, says, “The main problem at AICM is not the operating capacity but the aging and deteriorating infrastructure. Terminals 1 and 2 require immediate modernization.
Mr. Cerdá added that the decision by the Mexican government did “not take into account the interests of consumers,” nor did it “respect the necessary consultative process with operators and users, especially at the country’s main airport,” adding that “such measures must be taken with the utmost technical and operational rigor, based on studies and expert analysis. In this case, we question the methodology used by SENEAM, AFAC, and AICM to determine airport capacity.”
It makes sense that Cerdá also emphasized the importance of collaborative processes based on international standards and best practices if the government’s priority is to regain a Category 1 rating from the US Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) International Aviation Safety Assessment program. IATA says it is ready to collaborate with stakeholders to ensure continued aviation connectivity at MEX.
The reduction in MEX’s operations follows a previous cutback in 2022, despite a government study confirming the feasibility of higher capacity. MEX serves as a crucial hub for national and international airlines, connecting Mexico to various destinations.
Last July, several cargo airlines began to operate at an alternative airport outside Mexico City due to the Mexican government’s ban on freighter aircraft operations at MEX. According to Cirium data, a total of 1,660 weekly flights and almost 300,000 seats are available from Mexico City International Airport (MEX) and NLU as of August 2023.
Featured image: Adrián Cerón, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons