WorldACD: Air cargo demand on the up but with regional variances

By Damian Brett

Air cargo demand continues to track in line with 2019 levels but regional performance is mixed, according to WorldACD.

The data provider’s latest numbers show that air cargo demand in chargeable weight was in May around 1% below 2019 levels — used for comparison given Covid’s impact in 2020 — and over the course of the first five months is roughly in line with two years ago.

But while volumes were in May up on 2019 levels in Asia Pacific (8%), central and south America (5%) and North America (3%), they were down in Europe (-8%), Middle East and South Asia (-20%) and Africa (-7%).

Rates meanwhile continued to surge compared with two years ago in all regions — although to varying degrees — due to lost capacity and were up by 77% overall.

“Different markets show different performances: it matters where you do business,” the analyst said.

WorldACD also looked at provisional data for the last five weeks and found that while rates and volumes had tracked downwards, this was in line with the normal seasonal trends.

“We consulted our database to track volume changes from May to June for the past ten years,” it said. “On average, we saw a decline of 0.4%. In other words, nothing unusual to be found in June 2021 volumes: the month will end up following the 2019 trend we noted for the first five months of the year.”

WorldACD also took a look at the performance of GSAs and found that they have increased their worldwide share in air cargo: from 24.2% in 2019 to 25.3% in 2021 (YtD). 

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