Mod­est slow­down in world­wide air-freight mar­ket

In world­wide air-freight mar­ket

Cargo Talk - - Front Page - CT BU­REAU

Lat­est data show that prior im­prove­ments in the de­mand en­vi­ron­ment are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing some re­ver­sal. Largely as a re­sult of a fur­ther slow­down in the emerg­ing mar­kets, mostly China; in­di­ca­tors of busi­ness con­fi­dence slipped fur­ther in April.

The In­ter­na­tional Air Trans­port As­so­ci­a­tion (IATA) re­leased data for global air-freight mar­kets in April shows de­mand (mea­sured in freight tonne kilo­me­tres or FTKs) was 3.2% above pre­vi­ous year lev­els.

De­mand has not, how­ever, grown in re­cent months. Traf­fic lev­els in April were slightly be­low those of Jan­uary and 1.1% lower than what was recorded in March.

Lev­els still point to­ward growth, but at the weak­est pace for the past five months. World trade growth has also slowed over re­cent months. How­ever, mo­men­tum in ad­vanced economies re­mains in­tact, and ex­port or­ders still point to ex­pan­sion. This sug­gests that cur­rent slug­gish­ness in the de­mand driv­ers is likely tem­po­rary.

“Trad­ing con­di­tions for air­freight are dif­fi­cult. Over­all, busi- ness ac­tiv­ity and trade have shifted down a gear af­ter a strong end to 2013. And this is tak­ing its toll on growth in the air cargo sec­tor. De­vel­oped economies are still main­tain­ing post- re­ces­sion mo­men­tum and the ex­pec­ta­tion is for a stronger fin­ish to the year,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s Direc­tor Gen­eral and CEO.

The air cargo sec­tor is com­mit­ted to im­prov­ing its at­trac­tive­ness to ship­pers through ef­fi­ciency. The goal is to re­duce ship­ping times by 48 hours be­fore 2020. A cen­tre­piece of this effort is the efreight ini­tia­tive, which seeks to mod­ernise the air-cargo sec­tor with pa­per­less busi­ness pro­cesses.

“Air cargo’s sales propo­si­tion is speed, and cum­ber­some pro­cesses are hold­ing us back. In March, we reached a sig­nif­i­cant mile­stone. For the first time, the e-Air Way­bill (e-AWB) was used for over 200,000 ship­ments. That’s good news, but we still have a long way to go,” said Tyler.

Tony Tyler Direc­tor Gen­eral and CEO IATA

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