A new year full of hope

A new year begins, ushering out a dramatic year and- a-half that probably left many in the industry wondering why they ever launched a career in the air cargo industry! The good news is that the crisis has waned and fears of a double-dip recession appear unlikely to come to a fruition. Volumes have moderated […]


A new year begins, ushering out a dramatic year and- a-half that probably left many in the industry wondering why they ever launched a career in the air cargo industry! The good news is that the crisis has waned and fears of a double-dip recession appear unlikely to come to a fruition. Volumes have moderated on last year at the same time, but pretty much all agree that it was a very unusual peak season due to inventory restocking. Most see the situation as returning to a more stable environment and are not particularly fussed at the slight slippage in volumes. But there is some amount of potential bad news in all of this as yields appear to be under some pressure as more capacity is reinstated and over the coming months a substantial amount of new passenger capacity is set to come on-stream. But many in the industry feel that overall the vast majority of carriers have learned some vital lessons from the crisis of 2008/09. Only time will tell if they heed these lessons. Global economics ultimately will be a key factor deciding the fate of the industry. Should another of Europe’s fragile economies falter – and there’s certainly a few potential candidates – this could knock the fragile foundation out from under the economic recovery. But if the Ireland situation is any indication, there is a very close eye out for any quivering that could foretell collapse and hopefully this will enable any problem to be nipped in the bud before it creates greater havoc. Security will likely be the biggest challenge for the industry this year. Certainly the Yemen incident – which coincidently occurred in the middle of the TIACA cargo event in Amsterdam popping the prevailing bubble of optimism like a pin on a ballon – will forever change the business. Thankfully common sense has thus far prevailed and a nearly unprecedented level of consultation and cooperation between government and industry is now in the works. Also of note is the degree of cooperation within the global supply chain industry. The formation of the Global Cargo Action Group was also an unprecedented move that, while long overdue, was clearly a very wise and just-in-time move. And so, while much frenetic action takes place behind the scenes, all the rest of us can cross our fingers that sensible steps are taken to tighten up security without strangling the industry. Here’s looking forward to 2011, Cheers!