Air cargo continues to flat-line
Data for global air freight markets released by International Air Transport Association ( shows that air cargo volumes rose just marginally in October 2015 as compared to the same period in 2014.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released data for global air freight markets showing that air cargo volumes measured by freight tonne kilometres rose just 0.5 per cent in October 2015 compared to a year ago. Year-over-year expansion fell back from September’s faster growth rate, and total cargo volumes in October 2015 stand 1.1 per cent lower than the peak of the uptrend at the end of 2014.
European carriers have driven improvements in air cargo growth, but they ran out of steam in October 2015 with a rise of just 0.2 per cent. Other regions also underlined the weak October 2015 trend. The most significant decline in cargo activity was experienced by North American carriers, who reported a 2.4 per cent fall in volumes. Latin America (-8.1 per cent) and Africa (-1.1 per cent) are smaller markets and also declined. Asia-Pacific was up, little more than Europe with a rise of 0.3 per cent. Growth in the Middle East, although a robust 8.3 per cent, was some 4.3 percentage points down on the average performance for the year to date.
“The outlook for air cargo continues to be difficult. While there was some optimism from third quarter growth, it has disappeared as the industry basically flat-lined. Cargo capacity has grown largely in lock-step with the continued robust demand for passenger travel. As a result, freight load factors have sunk to the 44 per cent range—a level not seen since 2009,” said Tony Tyler, DDG and CEO, IATA. Regional analysis
Asia Pacific carriers saw a slight rise in FTKs of 0.3 per cent in October compared to October 2014, and capacity expanded 2.9 per cent. Trade growth in China and other key export economies remains disappointing. Chinese export orders spiked in October, which could result in better demand for air freight in two to three months.
European carriers reported a rise in demand in October of just 0.2 per cent compared to a year ago and capacity
European carriers have driven improvements in air cargo growth, but they ran out of steam in October 2015 with a rise of just 0.2 per cent
rose 5.6 per cent. Although this is a weaker performance than in recent months, improvements in the Eurozone are expected to continue, especially trade activity to/from Central and Eastern Europe.
North American airlines experienced a decline of 2.4 per cent year-on-year and capacity grew 6.0 per cent. There are mixed signals from this market. Middle Eastern carriers saw demand expand by 8.3 per cent, and capacity rise 11.6 per cent. Recent air cargo growth in the region continues to trend well below the rates seen for the first half of the year. Saudi Arabia and the UAE, among others in the region, have seen slowdowns in non-oil sectors, but growth rates remain robust.
Latin American airlines reported a decline in demand of 8.1 per cent year-on-year, and capacity expanded 5.0 per cent.Year-to-date performance for Latin American air cargo is the worst of any region by some margin, contracting by 5.9 per cent.
African carriers experienced a fall in demand of 1.1 per cent, and capacity rose by 6.9 per cent. Despite the October result, Africa is still the second fastest growing air cargo market for the year-to-date.