Cargo business growth among Middle Eastern carriers slowed during February as their rate of route expansion was cut, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
The aviation authority said in a statement that regional airlines were able to continue their growth trend despite a global slowdown, expanding 3.7 percent in February.
IATA said that over the past six months the major carriers in the region have cut their rate of route expansion, which may account for the relative slowdown in freight volume growth.
The Middle East freight business market made up 14 percent of the global market, it added.
Globally, IATA said air cargo volumes - measured in freight tonne kilometres or FTKs - suffered a 5.6 percent fall in February compared to February 2015.
It said the figure is heavily skewed due to the impact of the US port strikes in early 2015 and Lunar New Year falling in February this year.
"The air freight business remains a difficult one. February’s performance continues a weak trend. And there are few factors on the horizon that would see this change substantially. In the absence of an imminent resurgence of demand, the importance of improving the value proposition with modernised processes remains a top priority," said Tony Tyler, IATA’s director general and CEO.For all the latest transport news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
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