Colombian airlines: positioning to capitalise on growth

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Colombia has been one of the fastest growing domestic aviation markets in Latin America during the past decade, with domestic passenger levels more than doubling during that period.

Similarly to other growing Latin American markets, Colombia has logged solid economic growth, witnessed the emergence of a growing middle class and entered into a period of political stability.

During the past year, operators in Colombia have battled currency pressure and rising fuel prices. Nevertheless, the country's airlines believe that a good deal of upside remains for Colombia over the long term, and are working to position themselves to capitalise on that that growth.

The country's largest airlines - Avianca and LATAM Airlines Colombia - are planning to expand during the next couple of years, adopting different approaches to that growth. Avianca has revamped its regional operations, while LATAM plans a capacity push during the next three years.

It remains to be seen how Colombia's smaller operators will navigate the push by the country's largest airlines to ensure that they maintain their leading positions in the market. But all airlines serving Colombia are working to exploit some forecasts showing total passenger levels could reach 100 million during the next decade.

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