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The air freight industry continued to struggle with overcapacity in April, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

Measured in freight ton kilometres (FTK), the availability of tonnage space rose 6.6% from April 2015, while volume, measured by one freight ton flown one mile, increased only 3.2%.

Regional stats were more variable. Asia-Pacific airlines reported a 2.8% increase in capacity in contrast to flat demand; North American airlines had a 9.2% increase in capacity but only a 4% rise in volume; and European airlines had the only positive result with a 5.6% increase in capacity but 6.8% increase in volume.

African airlines reported a dramatic increase in capacity of 24%, despite no change in volumes year-on-year, though they only account for 1.4% of global air cargo volume.

This is the first month unaffected by the slowdown from the USA’s West Coast sea ports, which caused a huge backlog of sea freight shipments and prompted many shippers to switch to air freight as an alternative.

IATA’s CEO, Tony Tyler, stated that these statistics “do not bode well for cargo markets” in the near future.

(Source: Supply Chain Quarterly)

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