May air freight volumes remain weak

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Air freight demand fell by 3.4 per cent in May, according to the International Air Transport Association, while capacity rose by 1.3 per cent.

Capacity growth has now outstripped demand growth for the 13th consecutive month.

Air cargo demand suffered from weak global trade volumes and trade tensions between the US and China, which has contributed to declining new export orders.

“The impact of the US-China trade war on air freight volumes in May was clear. Year-on-year demand fell by 3.4 per cent. It’s evidence of the economic damage that is done when barriers to trade are erected,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s director general and chief executive.

“Renewed efforts to ease the trade tensions coming on the side-lines of the G20 meeting are welcome. But even if those efforts are successful in the short-term, restoring business confidence and growing trade will take time. And we can expect the tough business environment for air cargo to continue.”

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