HK sees plummeting volumes

Hong Kong’s December air cargo throughput plunged 29.7 per cent from a year earlier, on the back of weak global demand for Asian goods as a result of the deteriorating economic conditions in Western countries where many retailers were offering huge discounts to sell goods over the Christmas period. The decline in trade accelerated from […]


economic crisis HACTL Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Ltd volumes


Hong Kong’s December air cargo throughput plunged 29.7 per cent from a year earlier, on the back of weak global demand for Asian goods as a result of the deteriorating economic conditions in Western countries where many retailers were offering huge discounts to sell goods over the Christmas period. The decline in trade accelerated from a 19 per cent year-on-year drop in November, according to the latest data from Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Ltd (Hactl). “The global economic performance remains bleak. With the toxic combination of falling trading demand and the possible modal shift from air to ocean taking place, the whole air cargo industry is undergoing an extremely challenging ice age,” said Ms Lilian Chan, Hactl’s general manager of Marketing and Customer Service. A total of 88,222 and 334,159 tonnes of export cargo were handled in December and in the fourth quarter, down 34 per cent and 21.5 per cent respectively against the same periods in 2007. HACTL noted that unlike in most countries where double-digit decreases of export volume were recorded in the fourth quarter, export trading to the Middle East from October to December recorded a 19.3 per cent year-on-year rise. The total export volume for the whole year was 1,394,146 tonnes, down 6 per cent year-on-year. HACTL data showed that air cargo volumes through Hong Kong for 2008 as a whole fell 3.8 per cent from 2007 to total 2,534 million tonnes. Export cargo was down 6 per cent to 1.39 million tonnes while imports declined 6.4 per cent to 644,886 tonnes. Transhipment was the only bright spot, up 7.3 per cent to 494,479 tonnes. Chan continues: “In light of the uncertainties in the global economies and loss of consuming power and confidence around the world, we can only be cautiously optimistic about the possible recovery in the latter half of 2009. In the meantime, Hactl is pushing hard to further broaden our inter modal transport services, as well as providing our customer with more tailor-made service initiatives and support. Notwithstanding the challenges ahead, Hactl’s role and commitment in sustaining Hong Kong’s unique aviation hub status will always remain.”