Monday, July 15, 2024
Global demand decline slows while rates slide further

Global demand decline slows while rates slide further

Worldwide air cargo demand continued its decline in the second full week of April, albeit at a slower pace than recorded in last week’s report, preliminary figures from WorldACD Market Data indicate.

Figures for week 15 (10 to 16 April) show a continuation of the decreasing trend in air cargo tonnages observed since mid-March, but with a week-on-week drop of just -2% compared to a -8% decline reported in week 14. Meanwhile, average global air cargo prices continued their decline with a further -2% drop, week on week – based on the more than 400,000 weekly transactions covered by WorldACD’s data.

Comparing weeks 14 and 15 with the preceding two weeks (2Wo2W), overall tonnages decreased by -9% versus their combined total in weeks 12 and 13, and average worldwide rates decreased by -4%, with stable capacity.

At a regional level, the downward trend in air cargo tonnages is visible from all of the main origin regions and on all lanes, on a 2Wo2W basis, particularly flows ex-Europe – most notably to Central & South America (-21%), Africa (-17%), North America (-16%), Asia Pacific (-14%) and Middle East & South Asia (-14%). This relatively strong decline ex-Europe is partially due to the Easter holidays. Furthermore, significant declines were observed on flows ex-Middle East & South Asia to Asia Pacific (-18%) and ex-North America to Europe (-18%).

In terms of pricing, on a 2Wo2W basis, the average rates show a slightly positive trend ex-Central & South America to North America (+1%), but for all other lanes, the rates are decreasing, with the most significant drop seen from the Middle East & South Asia to Asia Pacific (-23%).

Year-on-Year perspective

Comparing the overall global market with this time last year, chargeable weight in weeks 14 and 15 was down -12% compared with the equivalent period last year – a return (after March’s -8%) to the double-digit percentage declines seen in the preceding five months. Notable percentage decreases in tonnages year-on-year were ex-North America (-25%) and ex-Europe (-18%).

Overall capacity has jumped by +12% compared with the previous year, with double-digit percentage increases from almost all regions – except from Central & South America, which was slightly down (-2%), and North America (+5%). The most-notable increases were ex-Asia Pacific (+33%) and ex-Africa (+19%).

Worldwide rates are currently -37% below their levels this time last year, at an average of US$2.56 per kilo in week 15, despite the effects of higher fuel surcharges, although they remain significantly above pre-Covid levels.

Picture of Edward Hardy

Edward Hardy

Having become a journalist after university, Edward Hardy has been a reporter and editor at some of the world's leading publications and news sites. In 2022, he became Air Cargo Week's Editor. Got news to share? Contact me on


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