Air cargo’s descending path

AIRFREIGHT has faced a slow decay during July – a harbinger of things to come, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) said.

Traffic results for July showed freight markets lost 0.4 per cent demand over previous year levels.

“With business and consumer confidence now tanking, sluggishness in international trade, and high fuel prices, the expectation is for a weaker end to the year. We are already seeing this in the shrinking air freight markets,” Tony Tyler, IATA’s chief executive officer, said.

Asia-Pacific carriers continue to show the weakest freight performance with a 3.6 per cent decline compared to July 2010. Asia-Pacific carriers, the largest in the market, have seen load factors slip to 58.1 per cent (from 60.2 per cent in July 2010). While the region suffers from a major imbalance with strong outward flows of manufactured goods and weak inbound traffic, the scale of their home carrier operations allows for better capacity utilisation.

Overall freight load factors have declined significantly (1.8 per cent) to the pre-recession level of 45 per cent.

Middle East and Latin American carriers are the only markets to have escaped the plunge with strong gains of 8.4 per cent and 8.2 per cent respectively.

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