Global air cargo demand in May was up 4.2 per cent on the year before, according the International Air Transport Association.
After a weak start to 2018, demand for global air freight has now resumed a modest trend upwards, IATA said. “However, the rapid growth seen in 2017 is now over, with demand growing at a significantly slower pace in 2018. In IATA’s mid-year industry outlook, 2018 freight growth was revised downwards to 4.0 per cent (from the previously forecasted 4.5 per cent in December 2017).”
Freight capacity, measured in available freight tonne kilometres (AFTKs), grew by 6.2 per cent year-on-year in May 2018. This was the fourth month in a row that capacity growth outstripped demand growth.
“Headwinds are strengthening with growing friction among governments on trade. We still expect demand to grow, but those expectations are dampened with each new tariff introduced. Experience tells us that trade wars, in the long run, only produce losers,” said director general Alexandre de Juniac.
European airlines posted a 2.3 per cent increase in freight volumes in May 2018. This was a slowdown from the 3.5 per cent rate of growth the previous month. Capacity increased 6.0 per cent. Seasonally-adjusted volumes rose slightly over the past two months; however, the annualised rate of growth over the past six months remains low at only 1.5 per cent.