According to official data released by The International Air Transport Association (AITA), global freight volumes showed a growth in demand of 3.8% freight tonne kilometres (FTKs) compared to 2015.
This was nearly double the industry's average growth rate of 2% over the last five years. Freight capacity also increased by 5.3% in 2016. With the exception of Latin America, all regions experienced positive freight growth in 2016. Almost half of the total annual increase in demand came from Europe.
In terms of demand, 2016 was a good year for air cargo. That was boosted by solid year-end performance. Looking ahead, strong export orders are good news. However, there are headwinds. The most significant is stagnant world trade which also faces the risk of protectionist measures. Governments must not forget that trade is a powerful tool for growth and prosperity,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO.
“The air cargo industry must also improve its competitiveness. We know that the way forward is defined by digital processes which will drive efficiency and improve customer satisfaction. We must use the momentum of renewed demand growth to drive the important innovations of the e-cargo vision,” said de Juniac.
Asia-Pacific carriers held the highest market share in terms of FTKs at 37.5% followed by Europe 23.5%, North America 20.7%, Middle East 13.9%, Latin America 2.8% and Africa at 1.6%.