MidEast cargo demand growth halves in November, says IATA

Cargo demand growth for Middle Eastern carriers in November was less than half the year-to-date rate as cheap oil continued to impact regional economies.

According to new data released by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) on Monday, demand expanded by 5.4 percent while capacity rose by 9.2 percent.

IATA said in a statement that although the Middle East led the way as the only global market showing positive growth, the rate fell to less than half the 11.9 percent average growth for the year-to-date.

Falls in the oil price are impacting some economies in the region, IATA added.

Globally, IATA said air cargo volumes (measured in freight tonne kilometres) were down 1.2 percent in November compared to November 2014. Total cargo volumes, however, expanded compared to October, and were higher than the low point in August.

The aviation authority added that this indicates that the decline in cargo demand may be bottoming out. 

The negative year-on-year comparisons occurred across all regions with the exception of the Middle East. Of the major markets that together comprise more than 80 percent of total trade, Europe was down 2 percent, North America by 3.2 percent, and Asia-Pacific by 1.5 percent.

Tony Tyler, IATA’s director general and CEO, said: "The freight performance in November was a mixed bag. Although the headline growth rate fell again, and the global economic outlook remains fragile, it appears that parts of Asia-Pacific are growing again and globally, export orders are looking better.

"In fact, the downward trend in FTK volumes appears to be bottoming out. But there is a great deal of uncertainty. The current volatility of stock markets shows how much the health of the global economy – upon which air cargo depends - remains on a knife-edge," he added.

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