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The International Air Transport Association reported strong growth in demand for air cargo in January, with international cargo traffic up 9.1% y-o-y.
The strongest growth was in North America, where cargo traffic for the region’s carriers was up 14.1%. This was followed by 13.8% growth for carriers in the Middle East and 12.7% in Latin America. Growth for carriers in other regions was at a somewhat lower pace – up 8.6% in Europe, 7.9% in Africa, and 6.4% in the Asia-Pacific region.
Worth noting however, is that the Asian Lunar New Year holiday fell in early February this year, which may have had the effect of boosting traffic in January and reducing traffic in February. We will have to wait until the major carriers, airports, and associations report their February traffic to know the extent of this effect.
Also, capacity growth in January (up 10.9% y-o-y) continued to outstrip demand growth – something carriers will have to pay attention to if they do not wish to see their yields erode further.