Schiphol reveals cargo volume decline in mid-year figures

By Rachelle Harry

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (AAS) has revealed a 9.2% decrease in first-half cargo volumes compared with the same period in 2018 as freighter flights decline.

Full-freighter cargo volumes at the slot constrained airport were down 16.4% and there was a decrease in full-freighter air transport movements (ATMs) by 14.4%.

Meanwhile, belly cargo volumes increased by 0.9% and ATMs increased by 3.3%.

The figures show that Shanghai remains the main destination for cargo transported from AAS. Despite ongoing trade tensions with the between China and the US, AAS shipped 88,481 tonnes of cargo to Shanghai in the first six months of 2019.

Moscow is the second-largest receiver of cargo from AAS. AAS shipped 38,633 tonnes to the destination in the first half of this year.

The airport is reaching its slot limit, which has affected freighter operations at the airport more than passenger services.

Bart Pouwels, head of cargo at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, commented:“The mid-year figures reflect our expectations for a decrease in overall freighter volume as we continue to face slot scarcity, on top of a weakening of the global air cargo market.

“As a mainport for the Netherlands, we are concerned about the negative developments within the air cargo market and the consequences it has for the overall network of our airlines at Schiphol.

“With a decrease of full freighters, we may become less attractive for freight forwarders, because forwarders need a mix of full freight and belly cargo to operate sustainably. This may result in forwarders leaving Schiphol and the airport becoming less attractive for airlines as belly cargo contributes significantly to certain routes.”

The mid-year figures also revealed a decrease in volumes across all markets, apart from small increases in North America outbound and the Middle East inbound.

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