Even as global air freight volumes continue to rise and the express and retail market balloons, freighter operators have been zooming in on converted narrowbody aircraft. Sharang G reports on the booming P2F market.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released data for global air freight markets showed that demand, measured in freight tonne kilometers (FTKs), increased by 11.4 per cent in July 2017 compared to the same period a year ago: Fourth time in five months that double-digit annual growth was recorded. July’s year-on-year increase in demand was nearly four times higher than the ten year average growth rate of 3.1 per cent. With demand continuing to outstrip capacity, it seems certain that airline yields and the industry’s financial performance will be watched with interest.
The robust growth in air cargo demand was consistent with an uptick in global trade, rising export orders and upbeat business confidence indicators. But Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s director general and CEO held out a word of caution: “July was a strong month for air cargo with double-digit growth. And for the third consecutive month demand for air freight grew at a faster pace than demand for air travel. While the outlook for the rest of the year remains positive, there are signs that the cyclical growth period may be nearing a peak.”