By ROBERT WALL
ANTWERP, Belgium — Ethiopian Airlines is losing around $8 million a month in sales as travelers cut back on African trips as concern about the Ebola outbreak in West Africa affects far-afield airlines, the carrier’s chief executive said.
“The Ebola scare has caused weakness in demand,” Tewolde Gebremariam said in an interview Thursday. Ethiopian Airlines has been hit even though the airline’s main hub in Addis Ababa is several hours flight time from the Ebola-affected region in West Africa.
Flights across much of the continent have been affected by the regional outbreak, Mr. Gebremariam said. “This is a major concern for African airlines,” he said.
The World Health Organization said more than 5,000 people have died from Ebola. Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone are the countries most affected.
The carrier has tried to cut back on capacity to help mitigate the effect, he said on the sidelines of the CAPA World Aviation Summit.
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