Russian Air Freight Market on the Road to Recovery

Latest trade figures published by the Kremlin show an increase of both imports and exports, thus ending a period of downturn in trading volumes and stagnation. The country’s transport sector benefits from the latest upswing, particularly air freight volumes are on the rise again after years where the business had plummeted.

Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport is Russia’s leading cargo hub
Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport is Russia’s leading cargo hub

Among Sheremetyevo Airport officials, a relaxed mood is prevailing following the presentation of satisfying Q1 cargo figures by Russia’s Federal Aviation Administration. According to their overview, SVO handled 60,000 tons of air freight and mail during the first three months of 2017, with cargo leaping 32.1 percent and mail 45.9 percent in a year-on-year comparison. Thanks to this upswing, SVO managed to strengthen its role within the Russian airport landscape as number one in cargo throughput.
Main carriers are AirBridgeCargo followed by Aeroflot Cargo that contributed most to the rise of tonnage at Moscow’s premier hub in recent months.

AirBridgeCargo contributes the lion’s share of air freight handled in Russia  -  photo: hs
AirBridgeCargo contributes the lion’s share of air freight handled in Russia - photo: hs

Transits dominate cargo flows
Sheremetyevo’s by far largest ground handler Moscow Cargo LLC reports a growth of freight flown on international routes of a stunning 94 percent, with transit shipments accounting for most of the freight passing through the gateway. While the flow of goods on international routes via Russia is showing strong figures, intra-Russian transports of shipments have in comparison fallen far behind, showing an increase of only 4 percent, states Moscow Cargo LLC. Quite a disparate development. 
The main international markets, accounting for more than 50% of the total cargo traffic handled at Russian airports, are China, Germany, the USA, the Netherlands, France, Italy and Israel. Among other markets worth noting are South Korea, Thailand and Singapore.
Conversely, cargo flows on domestic sectors with Moscow as starting point or final destination put cities in the far eastern part of the country on top of the list, namely Vladivostok, Khabarovsk and Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. 


Moscow Cargo gets new freight terminal
Currently, construction work is underway with its commissioning scheduled for Q3 of 2017.
The total area of the first stage of the largest cargo terminal in Russia, operated by "Moscow Cargo LLC” will be 42,300 square meters. The complex is built for accommodating 380,000 tons per year. Should market demand require additional space, the capacity of the facility can be enlarged through extensions to handle up to 1 million tons per year. 
The new terminal will be equipped with a new state-of-the-art handling and storage system stemming from German specialist Loedige, one of the world’s leading providers of cargo handling equipment. The high level of automation will allow setting new standards, enhancing the quality of cargo handling at Sheremetyevo and up the speed of processes.
Moscow Cargo LLC emphasizes that their new cargo complex will meet the growing needs of the air freight market and create conditions for the further development of strategic partnerships with line-haul freight carrier ABC and the entire Volga-Dnepr Group as well as Aeroflot Cargo to turn Sheremetyevo Airport into a global cargo hub.

Heiner Siegmund



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