LAN's Cueto sees 'no big impact' from earthquake

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LAN executive VP Enrique Cueto believes that the traffic drop which resulted after a devastating earthquake struck Chile late last month will not cause a "big impact" on the airline group's financials.

Speaking to ATI on the sidelines of the FIDAE 2010 air show in Santiago, Cueto says: "Everything will depend on how the traffic will recover over the next weeks."

Cueto acknowledges that LAN's traffic in Chile has seen a significant decline. But he adds the earthquake only affects a small part of LAN's network and he expects the global impact on group results to be "absolutely minimal".

LAN has cargo and passenger airline subsidiaries in several Latin American countries. While Chile itself is a relatively small market Cueto believes the Chilean government will be needed "to massively promote Chilean tourism abroad" in order for traffic in LAN's home country to return to pre-earthquake levels.