Belly to bolster Cathay cargo business in 2023

Photo: Cathay Pacific

Cathay Pacific Cargo customers will benefit from the return of belly capacity but the air cargo market must still grapple with China’s unstable supply chains going into 2023.

This is the expectation of George Edmunds, general manager cargo commercial at Cathay Pacific Cargo, in a year-end round-up of how the air cargo market has impacted the airline’s operations.

“On the capacity front, as we head into 2023 our expanding passenger network will provide our cargo customers with more destinations and greater frequencies to choose from.

“However, we expect headwinds in the air cargo market to continue in the short term until supply chains in the Chinese Mainland become more stable and inventory levels in key consumer markets reduce.”

A shift in the Chinese government’s approach to Covid containment and management is positive though, Edmunds said.

“We think that global economic effects will linger certainly into Q1 2023, but as the COVID-19 policies on the Chinese Mainland start to ease – and there are encouraging signs – it will help normalise supply chains.”

Air cargo demand will be bolstered by the easing of the cost of living crisis next year, he predicts.

“Additionally, as winter recedes, some of the acuteness of the cost of living crisis will alleviate, which will stimulate demand even as cargo belly capacity starts to grow.

“Cathay Pacific is aiming to have 70 per cent of its pre-pandemic passenger capacity flying by the end of 2023 and return to pre-pandemic levels by the end of 2024, which is ahead of IATA’s Asia Pacific traffic forecast.”

Cathay Pacific recently confirmed it is in talks to acquire more freighters.

Cathay Pacific hungry for freighters

Covid restrictions continue to impact Cathay Pacific’s cargo volumes

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Rebecca Jeffrey

Rebecca Jeffrey
New to aviation journalism, I joined Air Cargo News in late 2021 as deputy editor. I previously worked for Mercator Media’s six maritime sector magazines as a reporter, heading up news for Port Strategy. Prior to this, I was editor for Recruitment International (now TALiNT International). Contact me on: [email protected]