Latest Air Freight Stats Show a Drop in March Demand

Decrease influenced by various worldwide economic developments, IATA says

The latest numbers for global air cargo markets showed a drop in demand for March. According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the effects of Omicron in Asia, the Russia – Ukraine war, and a challenging operating backdrop contributed to the decline.

Global demand, measured in cargo tonne-kilometers (CTKs), fell 5.2% compared to March of last year (-5.4% for international operations). As for capacity, it was 1.2% above March 2021 (+2.6% for international operations). It is also important to note that it is a significant decline from the 11.2% year-on-year increase in February. Asia and Europe had the largest falls in capacity.

“Air cargo markets mirror global economic developments. In March, the trading environment took a turn for the worse,” notes Willie Walsh, IATA’s director general. “The combination of war in Ukraine and the spread of the Omicron variant in Asia have led to rising energy costs, exacerbated supply chain disruptions, and fed inflationary pressure. As a result, compared to a year ago, there are fewer goods being shipped—including by air.”