Europe airfreight traffic stabilising

EUROPEAN airlines and airports recorded another month of poor freight traffic in May, although signs point the way to stabilisation.

“May was another catastrophic month for airfreight, which posted a 19.8 per cent decrease, year-on-year,” said the Association of European Airlines (AEA), which represents 33 carriers including Air France-KLM and British Airways. “Several AEA airlines have seen their cargo volumes cut by one third or more.”

David Henderson, manager information at the AEA, said: “You can tell how deep a well is by dropping a stone into it. When it comes to the airfreight market, the stone started falling several months ago and we’re still waiting to hear the splash.”

He added: “It is hard to imagine that decreases of this magnitude will not have long-lasting effects in the market, or even provoke fundamental changes, although we couldn’t predict what these could be.”

Airports Council International reported a drop of 20.1 per cent in May year-on-year in May, which at least is up from April’s -25.4 per cent fall. June’s figures are still not available but director-general Olivier Jankovec estimated that freight would be down around 16 per cent.

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