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Theres Weakness in International Air Freight

In seeking causes for the weak performance, Giovanni Bisignani, director general and CEO of IATA, notes that, “The story for the first half of the year is cargo. Compared to 13.2% growth for the first half of 2004, the 3.4% freight growth for the same period in 2005 indicates that extraordinary fuel prices are softening international trade.” The Association points out that with 40% of the value of goods traded internationally moving as air freight, air cargo traffic is a leading economic indicator.

First half statistics indicate Latin America as the weakest sector, down 2.9%. Counter to popular perception, the two geographic areas showing strongest growth in air freight are the Middle East, up 12.9%, and Africa, climbing 10.9%. The Asia Pacific region was up 4.4% and Europe up 2.2%. North American air cargo showed a minimum increase, up just 0.01%, according to IATA.

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