The soft demand for air cargo transport has persisted through September as the global economy remains sluggish, according to the latest traffic figures released by the Malaysia-based Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA).
International air cargo demand met by Asia-Pacific airlines declined by 2.1 percent in September compared to the same month last year—“a continuation of the prolonged weakness seen in the air cargo market for the past two and a half years,” AAPA said.
Offered freight capacity increased marginally by 0.8 percent, leading to a 1.9 percentage point contraction in the average international freight load factor, to 64.8 percent for the month.
“Asian carriers experienced a 1.7 percent decline in international air cargo demand during the first three quarters of the year, with soft global trading conditions affecting exports from regional manufacturing centers,” explained Andrew Herdman, AAPA director general.
“Air cargo volumes appear to have stabilized over the past few months but rates remain under pressure due to an overhang of excess freighter capacity,” he added. “Asian airlines are still facing a challenging operating environment, marked by competitive pressures on yields and margins.”