Air cargo growth slows

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Global air freight traffic growth continued to slow down during September, to just 0.6 per cent, according to results from The International Air Transport Association.

This is the second month-on-month fall in air freight growth in a row.

The association says that the September figure is less significant than the 0.6 per cent fall in air freight volumes between August and September which is more indicative of the trend, and that this has eroded the stability in volumes achieved earlier in 2012.

However capacity was trimmed 0.6 per cent compared to levels in the same period last year, and this strengthened the freight load factor slightly to 45.6 per cent from 45.1 per cent a year ago.

Carriers in China, Latin America and the Middle East are reporting strong growth. Europe’s airlines are experiencing profitless growth in a strategy to manage high fixed costs and taxes.

“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 per cent since the start of 2012. Even with that, airlines are expected to eke out a global net profit margin of only 0.6 per cent. It’s a tough year,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s director general and chief executive.

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