Global demand for air freight decreased by 4.5 per cent in September 2019 compared to the same period last year, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
The drop represents the eleventh consecutive month of year-on-year decline in freight volumes – the longest decline since the global financial crisis in 2008/09. Although freight capacity, which is measured in available freight tonne kilometres (AFTK’s), rose by 2.1 per cent.
European airlines reported a 3.3 per cent decrease in freight demand in September 2019, compared to the same period last year, due to weaker manufacturing conditions for exporters in Germany, softer regional economies, and an uncertainty due to Brexit.
Asia-Pacific airlines saw a more significant drop of 4.9 per cent, in the same period, due to the ongoing China-US and South Korea-Japan trade tensions, and a slowdown in the Chinese economy having significantly impacted the region.
Alexandre de Juniac, director general and CEO at IATA, said: “The US-China trade war continues to take its toll on the air cargo industry. October’s pause on tariff hikes between Washington and Beijing is good news. But trillions of dollars of trade is already affected, which helped fuel September’s 4.5% year-on-year fall in demand.
“And we can expect the tough business environment for air cargo to continue”.
By Michelle Mooney