Middle East freight next casualty in downturn

DUBAI Middle East freight traffic fell by 2.6 per cent in November 2008 and the whole Middle East region is expected to report a 1.6 per drop.

While global freight traffic has been falling (it dropped 13.6 per cent in November) the Middle East has manage to escape unscathed. A drop, even a small one, will start to worry Middle Eastern Carriers that their luck has run out.

Meanwhile, African carriers were the only ones who still enjoyed growth in freight traffic, at 2.2 per cent, although lower than the previous month’s growth of 3 per cent.

It has been suggested that much of this growth can be tracked back to China’s multi-billion dollar investment in Africa in return for resources to fuel its own economic growth. With China’s economy slowing it remains to be seen how long Africa’s cargo freight will hold out.

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