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Report: Airport operators invest $3 billion in IT

International survey reveals airports anxious of budget cuts due to current economic instability

Airport operators around the world are spending $3 billion on information technology and telecommunications.

The figure was revealed in the fifth annual Airport IT Trends Survey carried out by SITA, an IT and communications solutions provider for the air transport industry.

The survey took into account more than 163 airports worldwide, where 80% cited improving customer service and satisfaction as their high priority investment driver.

26% of airports seem to be affected by the economic downturn, stating that the main obstacle to achieving their IT strategy was a lack of investment or trimmed budgets. Nevertheless, the level of investment in IT has remained fairly consistent mainly because of early long-term plans set in place by airport operators.

Investment has risen slightly from 2007 though, bringing the total IT spend close to $3 billion.

“Airports are also investing in IT projects which monitor noise and local air quality as well as improved energy use and the environmental sustainability of IT resources,” commented Bruno Frentzel, SITA senior vice president of Application Services.

“There appears to be a shift towards ‘greener’ airports which is a trend that will be worth tracking in future surveys,” Frentzel added.

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