According to preliminary traffic figures for the month of February released recently by the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA), there has been a steep double-digit decline in the air cargo business in the region.
The cargo markets recorded major slump as demand in freight tonne kilometre (FTK) terms saw a double-digit fall of 11.9% compared to the same month last year. Weakness in export activity was driven by slower demand from major advanced and emerging market economies, including China. The fall in demand vis-à-vis the 1.2% contraction in offered freight capacity led to a significant drop in the average international freight load factor, by 6.5 percentage points to 53.3% for the month.
Andrew Herdman, AAPA Director General said, “ Air cargo markets experienced challenging conditions. Declining confidence levels contributed to further falls in new export orders, adversely affecting demand for air shipments. Taken together, the first two months of the year saw an 8.3% decline in air cargo demand for Asian carriers.”