On to 2008 at a Healthy Pace for International Air Cargo

The projection comes from The International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) annual forecasts. While air freight experienced its strongest traffic rebound since the 1991 recovery from the Gulf War, IATA Director General and CEO, Giovanni Bisignani, notes that, “Expectations for the rest of the forecast period are in line with historical industry trends. If nothing changes in the operating environment, this is the start of a good news story for the industry."

Issued before the Asian tsunami, the IATA freight forecast predicted the five fastest growing international air freight markets from 2004 to 2008 to be China-Netherlands growing at an average annual growth rate of 23.0%, India-Sri Lanka at 21.7%, Philippines-Thailand at 18.2%, China-Malaysia at 16.2% and Austria-China at 14.6%.

As this report is being written, fuller coverage on the expected longer lasting effects of the tragedy on freight, generally, is being prepared for the February issue of Logistics Today.

While overall air freight route growth is projected at a 6% average annual growth rate, here are specific projections.

IATA monitors both air passenger and freight traffic. “Strong traffic growth is only half the story,” cautions Bisignani. “Damaged balance sheets from four successive years of record losses totaling $35 billion (US) and three years of lost growth will take more than a rebound in traffic to repair. Structural change is essential to return the industry to health.”
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