Air Cargo Bottlenecks Could Put Lives at Risk

The COVID-19 crisis has seen almost the entire world-wide passenger aircraft fleet grounded; a fleet which normally transports almost half of total air cargo shipments.


IATA International Air Transport Association


The International Air Transport Association (IATA) and its members renewed their call to governments to take urgent measures to ensure that vital air cargo supply lines remain open, efficient and effective.

The COVID-19 crisis has seen almost the entire world-wide passenger aircraft fleet grounded; a fleet which normally transports almost half of total air cargo shipments. Airlines are scrambling to meet the gap between cargo demand and available lift by all means possible, including re-introducing freighter services and using passenger aircraft for cargo operations. To support these efforts, governments need to remove key obstacles by:

  • Introducing fast track procedures for overflight and landing permits for cargo operations, particularly in key manufacturing hubs in Asia — China, Korea and Japan — in response to the increased number of cargo charters replacing withdrawn passenger operations.
  • Exempting flight crew members who do not interact with the public from 14-day quarantine requirements to ensure cargo supply chains are maintained
  • Supporting temporary traffic rights for cargo operations where restrictions may apply
  • Removing economic impediments, such as overflight charges, parking fees, and slot restrictions to support air cargo operations during these unprecedented times
  • Removing operating hour curfews for cargo flights to facilitate the most flexible global air cargo network operations

Keeping Air Cargo Moving