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GENEVA: December 05, 2018 IATA says its member airlines reported an overall 3.1 percent rise in airfreight demand in October 2018 year-on-year (YoY). This was up from a 29-month low of 2.5 percent in the previous month.

Capacity outstripped demand for the eight month in a row rising 5.4 percent in October.

XiamenAirBased on measuring the amount of kilos carried over the most direct route between origin and destination (DTKs), Amsterdam-based analytics company WorldACD says October showed a small YoY growth of 2.0 percent worldwide. Air cargo yield rose to US$1.99, 7.0 percent higher than in October 2017 as load factors fell 1.3 percent YoY.

IATA says the overall volume increase reflects the expansions of international e-commerce and an upturn in the global investment cycle even as orders fell in all major exporting countries in October, there were longer supplier delivery times in Asia and Europe, and consumer confidence weakened compared to very high levels at the beginning of 2018.

“Cargo is a tough business, but we can be cautiously optimistic as we approach the end of 2018. Slow but steady growth continues despite trade tensions,” declared IATA director general and CEO Alexandre de Juniac. “The growth of e-commerce is more than making up for sluggishness in more traditional markets. And yields are strengthening in the traditionally busy fourth quarter. We must be conscious of the economic headwinds, but the industry looks set to bring the year to a close on a positive note,” he added.

With continued speculation surrounding ‘Tariff Man’ Trump’s trade war with China – currently on hold for 90 days and conveniently including Western and Asian holiday periods – WorldACD says September China to USA volumes rose 2.1 percent YoY, while USA to China traffic increased just 0.7 percent. However in October China to USA airfreight shipments were up by 4.5 percent while USA to China down volumes fell by the same percentage.

Combining the two months’ traffic in both directions, the company notes a YoY growth of 1.9 percent, well above the world average of 0.9 percent for the period. “More likely a case of US businesses stocking up before tariffs really start to bite” [on the US consumer].

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