Thursday, 28 September, 2023

Global air cargo showing smallest year-over-year contraction in June’23

  • Special Correspondent
  • 8 August, 2023 12:00 AM
  • Print news
Global air cargo showing smallest year-over-year contraction in June’23

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Global demand, measured in cargo tonne-kilometers (CTKs), fell 3.4 percent in June compared to June 2022 (-3.7 percent for international operations), said a release of the International Air Transport Association (IATA). 

For the half year, demand slid 8.1 percent compared to the January-June period of 2022 (-8.7 percent for international operations). However, demand in June was only 2.4 percent below June 2019 levels (pre-pandemic).

Capacity, as measured by available cargo tonne-kilometers (ACTKs), rose 9.7 percent compared to June 2022, which was a slower rate compared to the double-digit growth recorded between March and May. This reflects strategic capacity adjustments airlines are making amid a weakened demand environment. Capacity for the first half of 2023 was up 9.9 percent compared to a year ago. Capacity is now 3.7 percent above June 2019 (pre-pandemic) levels.

Global cross-border trade decreased by 2.4 percent year-over-year in May, reflecting the cooling demand environment and challenging macroeconomic conditions.

The difference between the annual growth rates of air cargo and the global goods trade narrowed to -2.6 percentage points in May, representing the smallest gap since January 2022. However, the gap still suggests that air cargo continues to suffer more than container cargo from the slowdown in global trade.

In June, both manufacturing output Purchasing Managers Index or PMI (49.2) and new export orders PMI (47.1) were below the critical threshold represented by the 50 mark, indicating a decline in global manufacturing production and exports.

“We remain hopeful that the difficult trading conditions for air cargo will moderate as inflation eases in major economies. This, in turn, could encourage the central banks to loosen the money supply, which could stimulate greater economic activity,” said Willie Walsh, IATA’s Director General.