Air passenger traffic at airports in the European Union in October was down 1.3 percent year over year while traffic across all European airports edged upward 0.5 percent, according to ACI-Europe, the regional body of Airports Council International. "With passenger and freight traffic in the EU market recording firmly negative results, there is no escaping the deepening impact of the European sovereign debt crisis on the real economy," according to a statement attributed to ACI-Europe director general Olivier Jankovec. "For the first time since October 2009, more than half of Europe's airports are experiencing declines in passenger traffic." ACI-Europe noted that "the contrasting performance of national markets continues to evolve with traffic in Slovenia, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Greece, Latvia, Spain, Hungary and Italy firmly in recession, while traffic in the U.K., France, Malta and Belgium is essentially flat. Traffic in Ireland and Portugal is showing encouraging signs of recovery, while countries like Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden are recording unimpressive growth. Meanwhile, non-EU markets like Iceland, Russia, Turkey and Moldova continue to register dynamic double-digit growth." The organization also reported that overall European freight traffic dropped 2.2 percent year over year, marking an 18th consecutive month of decline.
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