Air cargo off to a robust start in 2018: IATA
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released data for global air freight markets showing that demand, measured in freight tonne kilometers (FTKs), rose 8.0 percent in January 2018 compared to the year-earlier period. This was up from the 5.8 percent annual growth recorded in December 2017
March 7, 2018: The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released data for global air freight markets showing that demand, measured in freight tonne kilometers (FTKs), rose 8.0 percent in January 2018 compared to the year-earlier period. This was up from the 5.8 percent annual growth recorded in December 2017.
Freight capacity, measured in available freight tonne kilometers (AFTKs), rose by 4.2 percent year-on-year in January 2018.
African carriers saw freight demand increase by 12.9 percent in January 2018 compared to the same month last year. The increase was helped by very strong growth on the trade lanes to and from Asia. Freight demand jumped by 59 percent between Africa and Asia in 2017 following an increase in the number of direct flights between the continents, driven by ongoing foreign investment flows into Africa.
The continued positive momentum in global freight growth into 2018 reflects the fact that demand drivers for air cargo remain supportive, stated IATA. Global demand for manufacturing exports is buoyant and meeting this strong demand is leading to longer supply chain delivery times. Demand for air cargo may strengthen as a result, with companies seeking faster delivery times to make up for longer production times.
"With 8 percent growth in January, it’s been a solid start to 2018 for air cargo. That follows an exceptional year in which demand grew by 9 percent. We expect demand for air cargo to taper to a more normal 4.5 percent growth rate for 2018. But there are potential headwinds. If President Trump follows through on his promise to impose sanctions on aluminum and steel imports, there is a very real risk of a trade war. Nobody wins when protectionist measures escalate," said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO.
¹% of industry FTKs in 2017 ²Year-on-year change in load factor ³Load factor level
The positive start to the year will set an optimistic backdrop for the World Cargo Symposium which will gather the air cargo industry in Dallas, Texas, 13-15 March.