IATA reports tepid air cargo growth

Cargo demand was 0.6% above the level of September 2011.

By ·

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced global traffic results for September showing a continued slowdown in the rate of traffic growth.

Cargo demand was 0.6% above the level of September 2011.

The minor 0.6% year-on-year growth posted for air cargo is less significant than the 0.6% fall in air freight volumes between August and September which is more indicative of the trend, noted IATA analysts. This is the second notable month-on-month fall in air freight growth in as many months. This has eroded the stability in volumes achieved earlier in 2012. Capacity was trimmed 0.6% compared to year-ago levels. This strengthened the freight load factor slightly to 45.6% from 45.1% a year ago.

“A ‘two-speed’ recovery is emerging into a ‘multi-speed’ reality. Carriers in China, Latin America and the Middle East are growing strongly,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO. “Europe’s airlines are experiencing profitless growth in a strategy to manage high fixed costs and taxes.”

IATA observed that in Africa, the challenge is to turn growth opportunities into profits. But for North American airlines the focus is on tightly managing capacity in order to optimize profits in a slow to no-growth environment. Asia-Pacific carriers outside of China are a mixed bag. Robust growth in China is being tempered by faltering markets in Japan and India.”

“Putting regional diversity aside, the fact that airlines are making any money at all with weak markets and high fuel prices is a tribute to their strong business performance, as evidenced by maintaining global load factors close to 80% since the start of 2012” said Tyler. “Even with that, airlines are expected to eke out a global net profit margin of only 0.6%. It’s a tough year.”

Brandon Fried, executive director of the Washington D.C.-based Airforwarders Association, said his constituents were seeing “relatively flat-to-modest increases in air cargo traffic in the next two months.

“However, many of our members focusing on niche markets including healthcare, oil and gas and manufacturing are seeing sizable demand for their services,” said Fried.

About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at [email protected]

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Article Topics

Air Cargo · Air Freight · Trade · All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
Warehouse Management Systems (WMS) / Inventory Management Technology: 6 Trends for the Modern Age
Here’s how the next generation of warehouse and inventory management systems are evolving to help logistics operations operate more efficiently and improve their bottom lines in our brave, new digital age.
Download Today!
From the March 2018 Logistics Management Magazine Issue
We know e-commerce is reshaping logistics, but what are the technologies savvy managers can leverage to meet evolving requirements and shifting operational constraints? We’ve rounded up insights from leading analysts to share tools that are available now as well as what’s on the horizon.
Reverse Logistics in the “Age of Entitlement”
Logistics Management’s Viewpoint on E-commerce: Leveraging available tools
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
Securing IoT data across the connected supply chain
Learn why a holistic approach to IAM is the most effective way to govern access to your systems and information requested by your partners, vendors, customers, and connected devices.
Register Today!
Evolution of E-commerce: The possibilities of tomorrow
We know e-commerce is reshaping logistics, but what are the technologies savvy managers can leverage...
State of Global Logistics: Delivering above and beyond
Industry experts agree that costs across all sectors worldwide will continue to rise in 2018, and...

2018 Rate Outlook: Economic Expansion, Pushing Rates Skyward
Trade and transport analysts see rates rising across all modes in accordance with continued...
Building the NextGen Supply Chain: Keeping pace with the digital economy
Peerless Media’s 2017 Virtual Summit shows how creating a data-rich ecosystem can eliminate...