June 2, 2017: The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has recently released data highlighting the market demand for global air freight markets. The air freight market increased by 8.5 percent in April 2017 compared to the same period last year. While the air freight market was down from the 13.4 percent year-on-year growth recorded in March 2017, it is well above the average annual growth rate of 3.5 percent over the past five years.

According to IATA, African carriers registered the largest year-on-year increase in demand of all regions in April 2017 with freight volumes growing 26 percent and the air freight capacity increased by 17.7 percent over the same period. The trade lane to and from Asia has seen a very strong growth with an increase of nearly 55 percent so far this year. The region’s load factor remains challenged--the lowest of all regions and well under half that of carriers based in Asia-Pacific.

"Demand eased in April. Growth rates, however, are still much more robust than anything we have seen in the last six years. That’s good news, but it should not be taken as a message that all is well in air cargo. The industry’s antiquated processes need modernization. With e-air waybill utilisation topping 50% in April, progress is being made. And we must harness the momentum to drive transformational change across the way the industry operates," said Alexandre de Juniac, Director General and CEO, IATA.

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