IATA has warned of much uncertainty in the air cargo industry this year, despite tentative predictions for accelerated growth.
The stats for air freight weren’t too shabby by the end of last year: volume, as measured in freight tonne kilometres (FTKs), grew 3.8%. This was despite 2016 being the first year since the financial crisis that world trade grew slower than GDP.
But IATA has expressed concern about US economic policy following the inauguration of President Donald Trump, whose protectionist outlook may lead to more restrictive trade practises.
Their press release describes “significant uncertainty on the scale and timing of the stimulative policy interventions in the US and the extent to which impacts of the planned tax reform, infrastructure spending and regulatory overhaul will materialise in 2017.”
While prospects for the US economy remain good, “a strong US dollar may be a drag on exports and impacts of US posture vis-à-vis trade policy are unclear.”
In 2016, air cargo had a weak first quarter but recovered in the second and grew in the third and fourth. European and Asian carriers accounted for approximately 64% of all growth, while the recovering Eurozone was a principal driver for air cargo demand.
(Source: The Loadstar)