A global aviation trade group says earnings in the industry will likely decline to US$3.5 billion in 2012 but those could turn into steep losses exceeding $8.3 billion if the Eurozone crisis veers toward catastrophe.
For 2011, the industry says it anticipates that surging oil and fuel prices will clip it profits at $6.9 billion — less than half of its $15.8 billion in 2010 profits.
The International Air Transport Association's annual review focused on Europe's debt crisis that is threatening the global economy.
The Geneva-based trade group called the gloomy economic outlook — particularly weak European demand and higher costs — challenging for aviation throughout the world, despite strong growth in Asia.
It said European airlines face certain losses next year.