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Monday, March 4, 2013

Report: Global Air Freight Traffic Increased in January

Global air freight traffic increased by 4.5 percent in January, according to the monthly air cargo report released by the International Air Transport Association (IATA). The increase was driven by demand in Asia and the Middle East, however IATA said the volume of cargo shipped by air was still below levels reported during the same period in 2010 and 2011.

The Middle East saw the highest overall year-on-year growth, with an increase in demand of 16.3 percent compared to January 2012. Growth in the Middle East was fueled by the addition of new capacity and routes in the region. Carriers in the Asia-Pacific region reported year-on-year demand growth of 7.1 percent, which IATA attributed to the timing of the 2013 Chinese New Year.

“The air freight business is showing some encouraging signs. But it’s too early to be overly optimistic. While the decline has stopped, overall volumes are still below the levels of 2010 and 2011. Load factors are low. And the global economy is fragile,” said Tony Tyler, CEO of IATA.

North American carriers experienced growth of just 0.6 percent in January, according to the report. Airlines in Latin America reported the only regional decline for January, as year-on-year air freight traffic there decreased by 1.6 percent.

In 2012, global air cargo demand decreased by 1.5 percent for the year. Tyler said IATA is standing by its forecast of an increase of 1.4 percent for 2013.

“Headwinds presented by the fragile global economic situation are strong. But if governments and all the players of the value chain are aligned, there is much that can be done to improve the competitiveness of the global air cargo industry,” said Tyler. More

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