The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has said that global demand for air cargo, measured in Cargo Tonne-Kilometres (CTKs), increased by 8.3 per cent in November 2023, compared to same period in 2022.
IATA in its statistics said that the result was the strongest year-on-year growth in about two years.
A statement by Willie Walsh, IATA’s Director General, said that the growth when compared to the same period in 2022, which recorded 8.1 per cent growth, was partly due to weakness in that.
Walsh also said that the result also reflected a fourth consecutive month of strengthening demand for air cargo globally.
Capacity, measured in available cargo tonne-kilometres (ACTKs), was up 13.7 per cent, compared to November 2022 (+11.6 per cent for international operations).
Most of the capacity growth continues to be attributable to the increase in belly capacity as international passenger markets continue their post- COVID recovery.
Compared to November 2019 (pre- COVID-19), demand is down 2.5 per cent while capacity is up 4.1 per cent.
Both the manufacturing output and new export order Purchasing Managers Indexes (PMIs) – two leading indicators of global air cargo demand—continued to hover just below the 50-mark in November with small positive movements indicating a deceleration of the economic slowdown.
Global cross-border trade recorded growth for the third consecutive month in October, reversing its previous downward trend.
Inflation in major advanced economies continued to soften in November as measured by the corresponding Consumer Price Index (CPI), centering around 3 per cent year-on-year for the United States, Japan, as well as the European Union (EU), in November.
In the meantime, China exhibited negative annual growth in its CPI for the second time in a row.
Air cargo yields (including surcharges) continued their significant upward trend (+8.9 per cent since October).
Rising yields are in line with improving air cargo load factors over recent months.
This could be tied in part to booming e-commerce deliveries from China to western markets.
Walsh said: “November air cargo demand was up 8.3% on 2022—the strongest year-on-year growth in almost two years. That is a doubling of October’s 3.8 per cent increase and a fourth month of positive market development. It is shaping up to be an encouraging year-end for air cargo despite the significant economic concerns that were present throughout 2023 and continue on the horizon.”