The International Air Transport Association published a new five-year forecast for the 2013 – 2017 period. During the five years, IATA predicts international air freight volumes worldwide will grow at an annual rate of 3.2%. Key points from the forecast include the following:
- China will move past Germany to become the second-largest air freight market (behind the US) by 2017, although with both China and the US adding about 1 million tonnes over the period, the gap between them will remain about the same. (Note, however, that IATA treats China and Hong Kong as separate markets. Hong Kong itself is in fourth place.)
- Volumes in Hong Kong and the United Arab Emirates will rise by about 700,000 tonnes each during the five-year period.
- IATA predicts that the imbalance in annual freight traffic flows from Asia to North America will to reach 1.1 million tonnes in 2017. At that time, the five largest markets, in order, will be the US, China, Germany, Hong Kong, and the UAE.
- The fastest-growing regions during the forecast period will be Africa, with a compound annual growth rate of 4.0% (with the intra-Africa market growing at 5.3%. Growth in other regions, in descending order, will be: Middle East (3.8%), Latin America (3.8%), Asia-Pacific (3.5%), and North America (2.7%) and Europe (2.4%).
- On a country-by-country basis, IATA predicts Vietnam will show the biggest growth, with a CAGR of 6.6%, followed by Bangladesh (5.7%), Brazil (5.5%), Ethiopia (5.3%), and Peru (5.2%)