Mitigate air traffic congestion, IATA tells US

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Mumbai, Nov 29 (UNI) The International Air Transport Association (IATA) called for the White House and Congressional politicians in the United States to take more aggressive short-term action to mitigate air traffic congestion and the lingering security hassles.

''President Bush's recent announcement about making limited airspace changes in an attempt to alleviate congestion during the holidays is a political placebo for a serious long-term illness,'' said IATA's Director General and CEO Giovanni Bisignani, in a press statement issued here today.

He warned that more air delays are likely to happen next summer if the Government continues to move too slowly in making capacity and efficiency improvements.

''Instead of addressing the problem, Department Of Transportation, US, wants to change the way people travel by making it more expensive at peak times,'' Mr Bisignani said.

Stating that the White House was considering peak pricing at New York JFK airport as a band-aid for delays, Mr Bisignani said that congestion pricing has never worked effectively for air transport in the world so it is foolhardy to believe that it will work in New York.

Urging the US Government to implement the IATA Worldwide Scheduling Guidelines and immediately implement operational and infrastructure improvements, Mr Bisignani added, ''There's already a list of at least 75 projects that could begin tomorrow and we can't wait any longer.'' MORE UNI

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