At the official program of Berlin-held air show ILA, which will be held from 20 to 25 May, cargo related topics are standing high on the agenda. This, particularly on Wednesday during the ‘Seventh European Cargo Transport Congress’, with leading aviation managers, politicians and analysts meeting to discuss latest trend in air freight.
Indeed, there are major trends worth to be deepened and elaborated among experts. Such as the disturbing fact that an increasing number of countries tend to set up trade barriers to protect their domestic economy. A trend that influences the exchange of goods and hence the flow of air freight negatively. “Since 2012, well over 500 different obstacles have been set up to intervene in free trade. That’s a disturbing an alarming picture,” warns CargoForwarder Global’s analyst and Managing Director of the Hong Kong-based AAA Advisory Group, Dirk Steiger. Asked by the organizers of the convention to deliver a market overview he’ll present latest developments in cargo. For instance, that last year the top ten forwarding agents commanded the flow of 60 percent of all global transports. This concentration, Steiger emphasizes, tends to continue. So does the centralization of flows on trunk routes linking the three dominant markets North America, Europe and East Asia.
According to Dirk, in addition to increasing trade barriers there are more disturbing signs on the cargo horizon: the uneven development of the biz with major growth taking place predominantly in the Middle East and Turkey, enabling the region’s state subsidized carriers to take even bigger chunks of the market. “This growth of tonnage, however, does not guarantee profitability,” Steiger emphasizes. But at the same time it puts airports like Abu Dhabi or Istanbul on the cargo map that are well on their way to gain global hub status.
Another aspect the analyst mentions is the divergence of the express and standard cargo segments, with express and special products like pharmaceuticals or perishables outgrowing general cargo fast. “Will there still be sufficient demand in future for setting up transpacific charter chains during peak seasons as done a few years back?” he asks.
Of high interest will also be also a presentation held by Artyom Arutynov, Head of Techniques at Volga-Dnepr Group who will deliver an overview on plans to modernize the An-124-100 freighter aircraft.
Further topics standing on the program are “the current tendency of development of the European air cargo market”, together with latest safety and security issues.
The day-long congress will end with a cocktail reception.